The Academic Staff Union of Universities(ASUU), has sounded it loud and clear that it would not hesitate to proceed on another strike if the Federal and State Governments continue to ignore the implementation of the Memorandum Of Action(MoA) entered into with ASUU.
The Port Harcourt Zonal Coordinator of ASUU, Comrade Stanley Ogoun stated this on Friday while briefing the Press on the state of affairs with ASUU/FG 2009 renegotiated agreement in Port Harcourt.
According to him, all efforts to compel the Federal Government and even the State Governments to comply with the renegotiated 2009 agreement have failed, leaving ASUU with no alternative other than the language the governments understand.
“Gentlemen of the Press,in specific terms, you are aware of our continuous battle towards compelling the government to invest in developing the Nigerian University System (NUS).
“Recall that, we were on strike for most of last year.A repeated action by our union because successive governments have seen the light, but deliberately choose the path of darkness,” the Zonal Coordinator said.
Commenting on the crux of the matter, Ogoun said, “the issues involved are not new. They boarder on funding , academic freedom to search for knowledge within ethical bounds and university autonomy.”
As a sign of goodwill, the action was suspended following the signing of a a Memoradum Of Action (MOA) with specific implementation time-lines. Be informed that once again the government could not prove us wrong,as they have satisfactorily honoured the terms in a breach,” the ASUU Zonal Coordinator said.
Other issues,he said were, funding for revitalisation of public universities,renegotiation of 2009 agreement, Earned Academic Allowance (EAA)and adoption of University Transparency and Accountability Solutions (UTAS) as against the IPPIS,among others.
The Zonal Coordinator, also lamented the neglect of state owned universities and establishment of new ones without commensurate funding by the visitors of such universities.
He cited Ignatius Ajuru University of Education and Niger Delta Universities,which he said are worse hit by poor fundings of their state governments.
Ogoun said in view of the foregoing, ASUU may once again resort to strike to press home its demands, regretting that such action would naturally hold the students to ransom,by shuting down the schools.
The Zonal Coordinator stressed that government attitude so far on the MOA is “a clear directive to proceed on strike”, which ASUU has been avoiding.