Some members of the Joint Action Committee of Non-Academic Staff Union (NASU) and Senior Staff Association of Nigeria Universities (SSANU) have said the suspension of the strike is ineffective.
AllNews Nigeria reports that NASU and SSANU suspended the four-month strike on August 20, asking its members to resume on Wednesday, August 24, 2022.
Members who spoke with Punch, however, said they were not aware of the move before it was taken, maintaining that a congress should have been held before suspending the industrial action.
Oriwaye Adefolalu, a former chairman of SSANU, UNILAG chapter said the suspended strike would not be effective with members of the Academic Staff Union of Universities (ASUU) still on strike.
He added that he had warned university-based trade unions against the divide and rule system operated by the Federal Government which he claimed was affecting the unions.
‘‘It is shameful and disheartening that the leadership of the Senior Staff Association of Nigerian Universities could not guide her counterpart in this struggle rightly.
‘‘Let me bring it to the awareness of the Nigerians and most especially Federal Government that calling off the strike embarked upon by JAC of SSANU and NASU without ASUU calling off her own strike would amount to nullity. Academic exercise would not be completed as no student would be taught.
‘‘Oftentimes, as a trade Unionist with many years of experience, l have warned all the trade Unions that are University based (ASUU, SSANU, NAAT, and NASU) to be aware of the divide and rule by the Federal Government. The result of divide and rule is what we are all seeing today,’’ he said.
Another member of the JAC who identified himself as Oseni also said the disunity in the leadership of the committee would affect the students who could not resume academic activities because ASUU is yet to suspend its strike.
“The National JAC leadership of NASU and SSANU is obviously polarised. It used to be an initial 3-armed-JAC with NAAT till the latter withdrew from the Committee. Of course, the students who are the primary victims of the strike, can’t resume studies without ASUU suspending the Strike.
‘‘We shall see what becomes of this Federal Government disunity-prone-approach in the next few weeks,” Oseni said.
A SSANU-OAU member who pleaded anonymity maintained that the decision to call off a strike rests on members of different factions according to the constitution.
"Honestly, if you go by the dictate of our constitutions, the decision to call off strike is rested on members of various branches. It is supposed to be the collaboration of all members. ‘’As for this no referendum in OAU as of now and anywhere else to discuss the possibility of suspension and to look at what has been put on the table by the government. All I’m aware of is, waiting for the 2023 budget. The decision to suspend this strike is supposed to be a collation of reports from the source referendum. ‘‘If we are not pleased, we have the right to reverse the strike. My chairman in OAU hasn’t said a word since that Saturday when the strike was called,’’ he explained.
Abdussobor Salaam, however, said the strike was suspended after taking the necessary steps.
‘‘Due process was followed. A National Executive Council meeting was called in line with our Constitution.
‘‘Please disregard this insinuation as it is a product of mischief makers, disgruntled elements and confusionists who want the strike to be prolonged for their own selfish ends.
‘‘If they honestly feel aggrieved and wish a redress, there are mechanisms for such and not on the pages of newspapers,’’ he said.