By Gabriel Dike, Lagos
The National Executive Council (NEC) of the Academic Staff Union of Universities (ASUU) will hold a crucial meeting in Abuja to take action on the nine-month-old industrial action which has crippled the Nigerian Universities System (NUS).
Daily Sun gathered that the crucial meeting will hold at ASUU Secretariat from Tuesday night until Wednesday.
A national officer of the union told our correspondent that the meeting was convened to deliberate on the resolutions reached by the various branch congresses on recent Federal Government offers at the last negotiations.
He confirmed that the national leadership of ASUU mandated the branches to hold congress this week to deliberate on the government’s commitment.
‘You know that it is the branches that called for the national strike. So, whatever government brings to the negotiations table, we will refer it to them for consideration and approval.
‘It is their resolutions or inputs from the congresses that will be discussed at the NEC meeting. After the NEC meeting, our leaders will then meet government officials to state our official position. Yes, a meeting between the union and government representatives is scheduled for this week. Let Nigerians keep their fingers crossed,’ he explained.
The outcome of branch congresses revealed that many branches favoured the suspension of the nine-month-old strike with conditions because of the government’s attitude of not honouring previous signed agreement.
Daily Sun learnt that some branches in the zones at their congresses resolved to suspend the industrial action, stipulating that the government, within a specific period, must implement the agreed demands.
The branches insisted the Federal Government must release the N70 billion pay without delay, the outstanding salaries of ASUU members, AND constitute visitation panels and other outstanding demands.
Recently, the Minister of Labour and Employment, Dr Chris Ngige, said universities will resume for academic activities in January 2021 as some of the contentious issues will be resolved soon.
Meanwhile, the new leadership of the National Association of Nigerian Students (NANS) this week gave the Federal Government a deadline of January 15 to resolve the issues with ASUU or face their action.