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News - South West - Ogun Updated: June 20, 2024

ASUU set to begin nationwide strike

By Philip Adeboye
June 20, 2024
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The Olabisi Onabanjo University, OOU, Ago Iwoye chapter of the Academic Staff Union of Universities, ASUU, held a peaceful rally on Wednesday to raise awareness about a nationwide strike.

ASUU-OOU stated that they were acting on directives from the national body, noting that the strike was initially supposed to start earlier. 

However, the union decided to delay it until July to inform stakeholders about the impending industrial action.

Led by Acting Chairman Dr. Olooto Wasiu, the rally saw lecturers marching around the university campus, informing students, parents, and motorists about the forthcoming strike. 

They emphasized that the strike aims to protect the nation's public universities.

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Lecturers carried placards with messages such as: “Nigerians, ASUU has sacrificed more than enough for the survival of the university system,” “FG stop playing politics with our educational system,” “Education is a right and not a privilege,” and “Our negotiation should be completed and implemented.”

In a press briefing, Dr. Olooto cited several reasons for the potential strike, including the federal government's premature disbanding of some Governing Council Boards of Federal Universities, the refusal to recall them, and the implementation of a 'no work, no pay' policy, which left members unpaid for three and a half months. 

He also highlighted the non-implementation of the 2009 ASUU/FG agreement, the rejection of the UTAS payment system developed by ASUU, and the continued use of the IPPIS system as unresolved issues leading to the strike.

Dr. Olooto stressed that the strike is unavoidable and that this advance notice is to ensure that no one is caught off guard.

He said, “The basis of the rally was to sensitize our students and stakeholders in the university about the impending strike. The action may be determined by circumstances. It might be a strike or something else.

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“The essence is to keep them aware that very soon, very very soon and truly, truly I say unto you that very very soon the action will be exposed but it will be as directed by the national body. I believe that they have been sensitized and given their consent. So, if they heard that ASUU was on strike, they would have already been aware of it and its purpose.

“There are many things the government has not done. Our colleagues were being owed eight months’ salary because of the previous strike. They adopted the policy of ‘no work no pay.’ They have paid for four and a half months. It remains three and a half months unpaid. We are saying the remaining months owed to our members should be paid.

“The claim was that they didn’t teach but they forgot that the job of lecturers is not only limited to teaching. There are areas of community service, there are areas of research. Let them go ask the students if what they were supposed to be taught when ASUU was on strike was not eventually taught when the strike was called off.

“Immediately after the strike called off and school resumed, we made sure that all that the students were supposed to learn were treated, they were examined, scripts were marked and results were released. What else did they want us to do that we did not do? So, there is no basis for withholding the three and half months salary of our members.”

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