The members of the Academic Staff Union of Universities (ASUU) have threatened to embark on another strike over the alleged non-remittance of some deductions made to the account of the union by the Federal Government of Nigeria. On 23rd December 2020, ASUU conditionally suspended the strike it began on 23rd March 2020, owing to the government’s failure to address the outstanding issues as outlined in the collective bargaining agreements of 2009, 2013, 2017 and 2019.
The union had opposed the adoption of the Integrated Payroll and Personnel Information System (IPPIS) while presenting its University Transparency and Accountability Solution (UTAZ) as alternative payroll software. The union while suspending the strike asked the Federal Government of Nigeria not to in anyway victimize any of its members that participated in the strike action.
Speaking to newsmen over the weekend, the chairman of the Academic Staff Union of Universities (ASUU) at the University of Ibadan, Ayo Akinwole, said members of the union are currently facing a harsh economy due to the unpaid salaries and a non-refund of deducted check-off dues by the federal government. He stressed that the injustices and victimization of its members may lead to a withdrawal of work in the nearest future.
According to the ASSU chairman, the suspension of the strike was based on an agreement reached and an MOA signed in good faith between the government and ASUU at the stakeholders meeting which was held on Tuesday, 22nd December 2020. A major common position agreed to and expected to be respected by the federal government and ASUU was that nobody shall be victimized in any way whatsoever for his/her role in the process leading to the Memorandum of Action.
Officials of the Office of the Accountant General of the Federation kept bringing up hopeless reasons for the perpetual non-payment of salaries, demanding loads of paperwork and documents, both from the union and the bursary unit of the various universities, as well as the university administration. The requested documents have consistently been provided on a monthly basis. Yet the salaries remain unpaid.
In the University of Ibadan, on 10th March 2021, about 67 ASUU members that are on regular nominal payroll have their salaries ranging from two to 10 months still unpaid as from 10th March 2020 till date, the chairman of the Academic Staff Union of Universities (ASUU) Ayo Akinwole stated.