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News - North West - Kano Updated: February 22, 2024

ASUU Chair asks FG to honour 2009 agreement

By Philip Adeboye
February 22, 2024
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The Academic Staff Union of Universities (ASUU) has appealed to the Federal Government to uphold and implement the agreement previously entered into with the union to prevent any potential industrial action.

Abdulqadir Muhammad, the ASUU Coordinator for the Kano Zone, conveyed the message during a news conference following a zonal meeting held on Wednesday in Kano.

He highlighted key issues, including the need to renegotiate the 2009 agreement between the Federal Government and ASUU, which was established when the exchange rate to the U.S. dollar stood at N146, compared to the current rate of N1,900. 

Muhammad pointed out that this drastic change in the exchange rate has led to a significant reduction of 90 per cent in the purchasing power of ASUU members' salaries.

Also, he expressed concern over the Federal Government's reluctance to finalize the draft agreement reached with the union, especially following the appointment of new leadership to the negotiation committee.

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“Therefore, the union calls on President Bola Tinubu to immediately set in motion the process of upward-reviewing and signing of the Nimi Briggs Committee’s renegotiated draft agreement as a mark of goodwill, and to forestall industrial crisis and restore hope for Nigeria’s public universities,” he said.

Muhammad, however, said that members of the union had received partial payment of their seven withheld salaries, and stressed the need to ensure full payment of the remaining balance.

The union, he said, also urged the Kaduna State government to pay the five-month withheld salaries of Kaduna State University lecturers.

Calling for payment of the Earned Academic Allowances and promotion arrears abandoned after the agreement, Muhammad condemned the dissolution of the Governing Councils of public universities, adding the action contravened Universities Miscellaneous Acts and respective university laws.

He further advocated a review of the Nigeria University Commission Act to check the proliferation of universities in the country without adequate provision for funding.

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On the state of the nation, the union decried the spate of insecurity, poverty, unemployment, rising cost of living, displacement and destitution in the country.

He noted, “ASUU uses this opportunity to call on all patriots in the media, civil society, labour movement and student groups to support its altruistic struggle to reposition Nigerian public universities.

“Finally, the zone urges President Bola Tinubu to faithfully implement the contents of the agreement it freely signed with the unions through collective bargaining.’’

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