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PROLONGED STRIKE: ASUU Dismisses FG Threat on salary arrears, Insists No pay, No Work



The Academic Staff Union of Universities (ASUU), says it was not perturbed by the stance of the Federal Government that their six months salaries covering the period they were on strike, would not be paid in line with the no-work-no-pay policy guiding the relationship between employers and employees as contained in the Nigerian labour laws, as canvassed by Adamu Adamu, Minister of Education, on Thursday.

ASUU National President, Emmanuel Osodeke, said the government’s position, meant that either the university teachers would not return to the classrooms, or they would abandon the classes the students missed during the period and move on with fresh lectures.

Maintaining that unfinished academic sessions should be forgotten, if the government travelled such route, Osodeke, who spoke on Friday, as a guest on Channels Television’s breakfast programme, Sunrise Daily, explained that though public universities had been shut since February, the lecturers because their conditions of service were not the same with other workers covered by the policy.

He stated that unlike other workers who would just move on after strike actions, lecturers were required to cover the backlog of works left undone during strike periods, adding that they payments were based on the work and not time and therefore, their salaries within the period must be paid, especially when they were not the course of the industrial action.

Hear him: “Let me tell you the difference between ASUU and other labour unions. When other unions go on strike and come back, all those periods for which you are on strike, you don’t need to do the backlog of work. But for ASUU, when we go back today, we are going to start from the 2020/2021 session.

“For these two sets of students that have been admitted by JAMB, we have to teach them over these periods to ensure that we meet up with the system. So, we are going to do the backlog of the work we have left behind. We are not going to start today and say ‘This session is 2022/2023, therefore, all these two sets of people that have been admitted by JAMB are cancelled.

“We have to take another admission for the 2023/2024 session.’ If the government maintains its stance on the non-payment of salary backlog, members of the union are not obliged to make up for the lost academic time. If we agree on that, therefore, the lectures we should have given [to students] for 2020/2021 and 2021/2022 [sessions], they should be allowed to go so we start a new session 2022/2023 within September which is when a new session should start.

“Therefore by July next year, I will go on my leave as we used to have in those days so that the backlog is gone. All the lectures that remain; all the two sets of admissions that JAMB has given that are waiting should become irrelevant. ASUU does not need a pity party over the government’s withholding of the lecturers’ wages. ASUU can take care of its members.”

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