Nigerian federal universities have been on strike for several months, and we hope that this would assist.
The Nigeria Labor Congress (NLC) has urged the Federal Government to end the strikes by the Academic Staff Union of Universities (ASUU), the Non-Academic Staff Union of Educational and Associated Institutions (NASU), the Senior Staff Association of Nigeria Universities (SSANU), and the National Association of Academic Technologists (NAAT) (NAAT).
The Congress demanded that the government quickly convene a high-powered commission composed of members with the necessary mandates to handle the aforementioned challenges threatening industrial harmony in Nigeria’s university system within 21 days.
After a meeting with its affiliate unions in the education sector, the NLC issued a statement signed by its President, Comrade Ayuba Wabba, and General Secretary, Comrade Emmanuel Ugboaja.
The NLC’s affiliate unions will meet in a Special Meeting of the Central Working Committee (CWC) to deliberate on the next course of action, according to the Congress.
The statement adds that “The Congress calls on the Federal Government to immediately set up a High-Powered Panel constituted of members with requisite mandates to resolve within 21 days the foregoing issues militating against industrial harmony in Nigeria’s university system.
“And pursuant to the foregoing resolution, the Nigeria Labor Congress would be convening a Special Meeting of the Central Working Committee (CWC) of all the Affiliate Unions of the Congress to decide on the next line of action.”
The NLC raised worry about Nigeria’s public tertiary education system’s periodic and extended strikes and other industrial activities.
It also voiced worry over the non-implementation of Collective Bargaining Agreements (CBAs) linked with unions in Nigeria’s tertiary education system, which it stated addressed university funding, earned allowances, and other welfare issues faced by university workers.
The Congress also expressed concern about the fate of more than 95 percent of Nigerian students, who are mostly poor children who cannot afford the average of one million Naira school fees charged by private tertiary institutions and are currently idling at home while the children of the wealthy continue their education.
The NLC stated that on August 18, 2020, it wrote to the Ministers of Education, Labor and Employment, Finance, Budget and National Planning, and the Federation Accountant General in an attempt to avert the current education sector shutdown.
Only the Minister of Labor and Employment, according to the Congress, acknowledged the letter articulating its worries about Nigeria’s tertiary education in a letter dated August 28, 2020.
The four university-based unions’ decision to go on strike had paralyzed academic operations at public universities.
Re-negotiation of the 2009 Agreement, which is expected to be reviewed every three years; challenges with the implementation of the Integrated Payment Payroll Information System (IPPIS); funding of Nigeria’s universities and tertiary education system; non-payment of arrears of minimum wage for university staff; and Earned Allowances for both Academic and Non-Academic Staff of Nigeria’s Universities are just a few of their demands.
We are hoping for a favorable response to this.