The Academic Staff Union of Universities, ASUU, will on Thursday hold a crucial meeting with the federal government.
Thursday’s meeting, if held, will be exactly a week since the lecturers refused to show up for a meeting with the government delegation saying such meeting was “unnecessary.”
This Thursday’s meeting is at the instance of the ministers of labour and education and was communicated to ASUU in early hours of Tuesday.
Persons expected to be at Thursday’s meeting are the Minister of Labour, Chris Ngige, and the Minister of Education, Adamu Adamu.
The President of ASUU, Biodun Ogunyemi, confirmed Thursday’s meeting.
“We just received the notification of the meeting,” he said in a telephone interview on Tuesday morning. “Until Thursday, that is when we can say what would happen but we have been invited for the meeting.”
A National Executive Council meeting of ASUU held last week had reviewed the government’s initial offer to some of the demands of the lecturers. At that meeting, the lecturers resolved to proceed with the strike which commenced on August 13.
According to a top ASUU official who pleaded anonymity, the lecturers rejected the federal government’s offer sequel due to lack of “trust.”
“Lecturers were not comfortable with the federal government’s offer because previous promises failed,” the source said, seeking anonymity as he was not authorised to talk to the media. “So, it was better to solve all once and for all, so as not to be deceived again.”
The federal government had reportedly offered to pay N23 billion and a monthly payment of N1.5 billion pending the outcome of the forensic audit being carried out by the Ministry of Finance on various universities.
Some of the demands of the lecturers include payment of shortfall in salaries, universities to be allowed to manage their internal revenue independently and exemption of universities from the Treasury Single Account.