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ASUU Demands Full Salary Payment, Governance Reforms

Daud Olatunji

 

The Academic Staff Union of Universities (ASUU) has issued a stern ultimatum to the Bola Tinubu administration, threatening to implement a ‘No Pay, No Work’ policy if their demands are not met within the next two weeks. 

 

The union’s president, Emmanuel Osodeke, spoke on  the government’s failure to pay public university lecturers their full salaries for the 2022 strike period and raised concerns about governance issues within the education sector.

 

Osodeke  who featured on a TV programme on Thursday, expressed outrage over the government’s decision to only pay four out of seven-and-a-half months’ worth of withheld salaries to lecturers.

 

He argued that ASUU members have diligently fulfilled their duties, covering the workload during the strike period without taking vacations or leaves.

 

The union contends that the partial payment does not reflect the sacrifices made by its members and is demanding full compensation for the entire duration of the industrial action.

 

ASUU highlighted the disparity in treatment between academic and non-academic staff unions, as members of other unions, such as the Senior Staff Association of Nigerian Universities (SSANU) and the Non-Academic Staff Union (NASU), have not received any compensation for the same period.

 

In addition to salary arrears, ASUU raised concerns about governance issues within universities.

 

The dissolution of Governing Councils by the National Universities Commission (NUC) upon President Tinubu’s directive has led to what ASUU describes as a breeding ground for illegal practices, including unauthorized contracts and recruitments.

 

Osodeke emphasized the importance of reinstating functional Governing Councils to ensure transparency and accountability within academic institutions.

 

The ultimatum issued by ASUU commenced on May 13, 2024, giving the government two weeks to

address the union’s grievances.

 

Failure to comply may result in disruptions to academic activities across public universities in Nigeria.

 

Osodeke further criticized the government’s allocation of funds, citing the disparity between trillions of naira allocated for road construction contracts and the comparatively modest sum requested for university workers.

 

He urged the government to prioritize the welfare of educators and ensure that they receive fair compensation for their services.

 

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