By Christiana Ekpa
Academic Staff Union of Universities, ASUU on Thursday resolved to suspend its three weeks warning strike following a new agreement with the government.
The resolution followed a meeting with the minister of finance, Zainab Ahmed and the minister of state for education, Emeka Nwajiuba which was convened at the intervention and instance of the speaker of the house of representatives, Femi Gbajabiamila in Abuja yesterday.
The new arrangement, the Federal Government is to release the sum of N30 billion, being part of the N220 billion tranche of the 2009 revitalization fund of universities in the country before the end of next week
Also to be considered is the union’s Earned Academic Allowances, EAA which stands at N22 billion for which the speaker, who presided over the meeting assured would be looked into so as to avoid perennial strikes going forward.
Gbajabiamila appealed to the union to avoid using strike always as a tool to achieving their aims and objectives.
ASUU president, Emmanuel Osodeke recalled that the lingering issue of universities revitalization started in 2009 with the government failing to remit the N1.3 trillion agreed on, hence the lingering issue.
He lamented the creation of additional state universities by governors when they cannot fund the existing ones, thereby, compounding issues.
Osodeke said IPPIS cannot solve the problems of universities, arguing that despite transparent claims of the system by government, there have been cases of double payment of workers while others are omitted for months.
But the finance minister, faulted the claim as she insisted that government was not aware of non payment of lecturers for up to 17 months as claimed by the union, asking the president to forward details of the non payment so that it will be resolved