The Federal Government has denied claims made by the President of the Academic Staff Union of Universities, Prof Biodun Ogunyemi, that it has failed to honor the promises made for it to call off its eight-months-old strike.
Chris Ngige, the Minister of Labour and Employment,said it is false and discomfiting for ASUU to wrongly inform the public that the government agreed to pay all withheld salaries before it will resume work, stressing that the timelines attached to the various offers made to the union had been complied with.
According to him, ASUU had at its last meeting on November 27, agreed to call off their strike before December 9 but failed to honor the promise.
The statement reads;
“The truth of the matter is that a ‘gentleman agreement’ was reached at the last meeting in which ASUU agreed to call off the strike before December 9, 2020, and the Minister, in turn, agreed that once the strike is called off, he would get a presidential waiver for ASUU to be paid the remainder of their salaries on or before December 9″.
“For instance, the Federal Government promised to constitute a Negotiation Committee for the 2009 Agreement and has fulfilled it with the last week’s inauguration of the committee that has Prof Muzali as chairman.
“The N40b Earned Academic Allowances have also been processed just as the N30b revitalization Fund, bringing it to N70 billion. Likewise, the Visitation Panels for the Universities have been approved by the President but the panel cannot perform its responsibilities until the shut universities are re-opened.
“The gazzeting is also being rounded off at the Office of the Attorney-General of the Federation while the Ministry of Education is ready to inaugurate the various visitation panels.”