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FG, ASUU meeting ends in deadlock

The meeting between the leadership of the Academic Staff Union of Universities (ASUU) and the federal government again ended without an agreement that will lead to the suspension of the over six-month-old strike by public university lecturers.

The striking lecturers met with the Chairman of the re-negotiation Committee Professor Nimi Briggs committee in Abuja, with the hope of resolving the impasse that led to the ongoing strike.

A senior member of ASUU, who pleaded anonymity told the media that members of the Professor Briggs renegotiation committee, did not come with any new offer on the table, other than to plead with the lecturers to suspend the ongoing strike, with promises that their concerns will be included in the 2023 budget.

ASUU has been on strike since February 14 this year, over issues surrounding the lack of funding for public universities, disagreement over salaries payment platforms, and unpaid earned allowances, as contained in the agreement with the federal government in 2009.

Efforts to renegotiate these agreements, and end incessant strikes in public universities, started in 2017 when the federal government inaugurated a committee headed by Chief Wale Babalakin, which was later replaced by Professor Munzali Jibril in 2020, but the exercise was halted by the outbreak of COVID-19.

Professor Nimi Briggs took over the renegotiation in May 2021 and has since then not been able to reach any tangible agreement with the universities’ unions, a development that has grounded government-owned universities since February 14 this year.

Reporting by Daniel Adejo; editing by Muzha Kucha