Strike: Minister reveals why ASUU, FG are yet to reach agreement

Festus Keyamo, Nigeria’s Minister of State for Labour and Employment, has revealed why the Academic Staff Union of Universities (ASUU) and the Federal Government have unable to reach an agreement on the ongoing strike.

ASUU decided on Monday to extend its statewide strike for another three months.

After multiple failed reconciliation sessions between both sides, the strike began on February 14, 2022.

Speaking at a press conference in Ilorin to mark the 40th anniversary of the Michael Imoudu National Institute for Labour Studies (MINILS), Keyamo, who was represented by MINILS Director-General, Comrade Isa Aremu, said the issue was about two conflicts of rights and interests.

According to him, the ASUU strike had turned into strife that had worsened the education sector in Nigeria.

He said, “Labour disputes are highly technical issues and need the relevant technical requirements and knowledge to interrogate.

“The issue here are two, dispute of rights and dispute of interests. Among the demands of ASUU is the issue of stagnant payment, which I also fully support. In fact, it is embarrassing for a Prof to be receiving N350,000 as a monthly salary, although the minimum wage should only be for the rock bottom workers. These are issues of right.

“The real conflict is between ASUU and the Ministry of Education. Issues of funding and other agitations are disputes of interest which need a different approach, not to go on strike. Even if you go on strike over a dispute of rights, how long can that last is another question.

“Strike is a temporary stoppage of work, but when you go on strike for 22 months and you shut down the system, that has become a strife.”


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