STRIKE: FG, ASUU CANCEL MEETING AGAIN

BY Frank Ikpefan

A truce meeting between the Federal Government and the leadership of the Academic Staff Union of Universities (ASUU) was cancelled on Monday.

It was the second time in a row.

No reason was given for the cancellation of the parley scheduled to discuss the union’s current strike.

It was gathered that ASUU was still consulting with its organs on the latest offer by the Federal Government to the striking university teachers.

The Deputy Director of Press and Public Relations in the Federal Ministry of Labour and Employment, Mr. Charles Akpan, announced the postponement in a text message.

“Good morning, colleagues. Please, note that the meeting with ASUU, earlier scheduled for today (yesterday), is canceled. The inauguration of the technical committee on PMS is as scheduled,” the message read.

When contacted, ASUU President Prof. Biodun Ogunyemi said the union’s leadership did not agree on any meeting with the government as consultations on both sides were still ongoing.

“We never actually agreed on any meeting. What we said was due consultations, and consultations are going on at the two levels. We believe the government’s side is also consulting. That’s why the meeting has not held.

“So, consultations are going on. Thank you,” Ogunyemi said at a media briefing.

ASUU has been on strike since March this year to drive home its demands.

In a statement last Tuesdayn in Abuja, Labour and Employment Minister Chris Ngige said the government had raised its offer to the striking lecturers to N70 billion.

He said the government was willing to pay N40 billion for Earned Allowances, which would be shared among three university-based unions and N30 billion for revitalisation.

Ngige added that the funds were ready to be disbursed, pending when the union would agree to call of the over eight-month strike.

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