The current lingering strike by the Academic Staff Union of Universities (ASUU) which started in February has entered its seventh month. The union embarked on a strike following what is portrayed as the inability of theFederal government to meet some of its demands.
The union is asking the government to improve the working environment of university lecturers, release earned allowances for lecturers, dispense revitalisation funds for universities, among other things. In the interim, the executives of ASUU have met with the Committee of Vice-Chancellors and Pro-Chancellors of Universities on Wednesday over the ongoing strike.
The team comprises past vice-chancellors and pro-chancellors such as the former pro-chancellor of the University of Calabar, Senator Nkechi Nwagogu; former vice-chancellor of the University of Maiduguri, Prof J.D. Amin; and former vice-chancellor of the University of Ibadan, Emeritus Professor A.O. Bamiro, and others.
The meeting was held at the National Universities Commission, and all the issues were raised, the issue of funding, that is, the release of the revitalization fund, the withheld salaries, adjustment of salaries and most importantly ending strikes permanently in universities.
This is coming after the first proceeding of the ASUU vs FG saga in court. The federal government keeps some of its stands while ASUU is also bent on standing its ground too. The peace committee was set up to discuss the demands of ASUU, as well as the possibility of calling off the strike soon.
The federal government had earlier held a meeting with Vice chancellors of universities in the country. This was after the federal government stated that other unions in universities have called off their strike except for ASUU. ASUU had declared its intention to roll over its then six month old strike to an indefinite strike.
The set up of the peace committee however makes the hope of ending the strike soon more feasible. The Nigerian Association of Nigerian Students has also insisted on keeping tabs on all the stakeholders and putting them in check by the long term protest they have started.