There are strong indications that the various university branches of the Academic Staff Union of Universities (ASUU) will hold a crucial meeting today across the country over the ongoing strike.
Premium Times is reporting that the lectures of the union will during the meeting consider the latest offer(s) by the federal government – whether to accept it or not.
Speaking on the development, a top member of ASUU, who sought anonymity, said that all the branches are expected to submit their respective reports to the national body who will take a final decision.
The source, while stating that the branch leaders have been warned not to speak to newsmen on the strike, added that they have been given three options by the national body to choose from at their deliberations, which are: to continue with the strike action, suspend the action or, ‘positively review the federal government proposal.’
ASUU, an umbrella body of all university lecturers in the country, is currently on strike over the federal government’s failure to fulfil its 2009/2013 agreement with the union.
The union embarked on the strike on August 13 over issues of poor funding, welfare of its members and the failure of the federal government to honour aspects of past agreements it had with its members.
Even after the meeting it held with the union – which 360nobs learnt had it a snag – the federal government revealed that the ongoing strike action by the union may be called off “within the next one week”.
To further compound the already complicated situation, the Senior Staff Association of Nigerian Universities (SSANU) on Monday said it will today meet with the Non-Academic Staff Union of Universities (NASU) and the Non-Academic Technicians (NAT), in Abuja to decide on whether to join the ongoing industrial action or not.
Meanwhile, there are also reports that the University of Ibadan (UI) has terminated the first semester, shifting activities left in the semester, especially examination, to second semester due to the strike.
It was gathered that the institution said whatever was left in first semester examination will hold in second semester, to bridge the time wasted.
Students mostly affected by the decision, it was learnt, were those under the institution’s Open Distance Learning, ODL, centre.
The centre, in a statement signed by its communication officer, Dayo Olajide, said that a separate time table would be designed for the outstanding papers.
He said: “All outstanding 2016/2017 first semester examinations would concluded a week before commencement of second semester examination.
“Apparently, the basis for this new arrangement is to save learners the hassle of coming down to complete examinations whenever the strike is called off.’’
Also, the United Labour Congress (ULC) has threatened to join the industrial action, if the federal government failed to meet the demands of the lecturers within two weeks.
Addressing the press after its Central Working Committee meeting in Lagos on Tuesday, the leadership of the union also demanded the immediate payment of all the salary arrears of Nigerian workers at all levels of government.