The federal government has again condemned the ongoing strike by members of the Academic Staff Union of Universities, the Joint Action Committee of the Senior Staff Association of Nigerian Universities, and the Non-Academic Staff Union of Education and Associated Institutions.
The Minister of State for Education, Mr. Emeka Nwajiuba during an interview said the government has agreed to most of the union’s demands and is currently releasing money based on what it has available.
According to Nwajiuba, the renegotiation committee had met with the unions, and everything ASUU asked for, has been met. However, ASUU and other unions are insisting on getting the funds first and are unwilling to continue working while the government works on their entitlements.
He compared the universities workers to their polytechnic counterparts, who despite being owed N15 billion in allowances and other entitlements for over three years, were willing to ‘bear with the government’ and continue working. He further described the unions’ strike as a disruption that hasn’t produced the money they are asking for.
Nwajiuba added that it is up to the lecturers to decide when schools will resume. He said;
It’s up to them, students, the government didn’t go on strike. It is the professional bodies that went on strike. They are the ones you should be asking when they will resume. We don’t have any disagreement with them. We are not promising anything. If you ask me why they went on strike, I will say I don’t know.