June 28, 2022

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Lecture free day not nationwide – ASUU Chairman, UNILAG

ASUU Chairman, UNILAG, Dr. Dele Ashiru

‘Leye Abiola and Faith Enang

The Chairman, Association of Staff Union of Universities (ASUU), University of Lagos(UNILAG), Dr. Dele Ashiru has explained that the ASUU lecture free day wrongly perceived to hold today was not for all tertiary institutions in the nation.

Dr. Ashiru who made this comment in an exclusive interview with UNILAG Sun revealed that the lecture free day was only for Michael Okpara University of Agriculture, Umudike as ASUU members in that school have decided to hold a national day of mobilization as directed by the union.

Explaining the reason for the mobilization, Ashiru said, “at the last national executive council meeting of ASUU, we agreed that before the next national executive council meeting, each branch of the union would declare a day of mobilization where congresses will be held and our members are expected to attend that Congress en-masse.”

“It is the University of agriculture, Umudike who declared today as their own day of mobilization. Unfortunately, The Punch reported it as if it’s a National day of mobilization.”

He further explained that each school was free to choose their own days for mobilization to sensitize members and the general public about the reasons leading up to the building strike. 

“What ASUU simply is saying is that as you may be aware, we have a list of demands before the Federal government which centered on the re-negotiation of the 2009 ASUU-federal government agreement. As we speak, the lecturers in Nigerian universities have been receiving the same salary since 2009.

“Now, last year when we went on strike to ensure that this is changed, we were given a list of promissory notes, including the fact that the 2009 agreement will be re-negotiated and filed. That re-negotiation has been concluded since May last year and up till now, government is still prevaricating on implementing that agreement.” he said. 

He added that the mobilization for UNILAG lecturers would be holding tomorrow, Tuesday February 8th, 2022. “… they have been invited to a special Congress tomorrow and while that Congress succeeds, there will be no lectures anywhere on campus.

“Lecturers, students, the Nigerian people are all to be mobilized and sensitized to the irresponsibility of government in ensuring that public universities survive. We are doing all these to avert a looming strike which was suspended last year based on government promises. So, if government fail to do anything at the end of all of these mobilization across campuses all over Nigeria, our Union may have no choice but to resume it’s suspended total comprehensive and indefinite strike action.”

The mobilization in UNILAG is slated to hold at the Julius Berger lecture theater in the Faculty of Engineering, University of Lagos by 11am prompt.

Dr. Ashiru noted that while attendance is restricted to members of the union, resolutions from the meeting would be communicated to the community.

He expressed hope that through these moves, students and general members of the university would be informed about the reasons for the possible strike actions due to failure on the part of government to fulfil the conditions of the 2009 agreement. “If we have to resume our strike action again, you have no any other person to blame other than these irresponsible government that we have.”