The Academic Staff Union of Universities (ASUU) has insisted that its members would not resume work despite the federal government’s payment of minimum wage arrears.In a circular issued by the University of Lagos branch of the union titled, ‘Payment of minimum wage arrears,’ the union argued that the payment of arrears was not part of its demand.
The circular read: “The leadership of our Branch has been inundated with calls concerning the recent payment of the long-overdue arrears of the consequential adjustment of the minimum wage.
“Our members are reminded that this is not one of the core demands upon which the ongoing strike action is premised.
“For the avoidance of doubt, the demands of our union are the conclusion of the renegotiation of the 2009 FGN/ASUU Agreement, abrogation of the fraudulent and scheme and the deployment of UTAS, payment of promotion arrears, the proliferation of State Universities and governance issues amongst others.
“While our union welcomes this unsolicited payment, our members should please conserve the funds and spend wisely so as to energise our struggle until all our demands are satisfactorily met
“Our Union commends the resolve and sacrifice of our members in enthroning a University system that is globally competitive.
“United we bargain! Divided we beg! A people united can never be defeated. Solidarity forever”.
The federal government had commenced the payment of minimum wage arrears, which it owed lecturers under the aegis of the Academic Staff Union of Polytechnics and Academic Staff Union of Universities
On February 15, ASUU began a four-week rollover strike following the federal government’s failure to meet its demands.
The National President of ASUU, Prof. Emmanuel Osodeke, said the decision was taken after the union’s National Executive Committee meeting.
ASUU extended the action by another two months to afford the government more time to address all of its demands.
The union also accused the government of displaying an indifferent attitude toward its demands.
Osodeke, in a statement to announce the extension of the rollover strike, noted that the national executive council of the union “was disappointed that Government did not treat the matters involved with utmost urgency they deserved during the four-week period as expected of a reasonable, responsive, and well-meaning administration”.
He said the NEC concluded that the government had failed to satisfactorily address all the issues raised in the 2020 Memorandum of Action within the four-week roll-over strike period and resolved that the strike be rolled over for another eight weeks.