I have decided to list and explain the major demands of the Academic Staff Union of Universities which led to the ongoing strike which commenced on Feb 14
Only three of the demands have financial implications.
However, only two have to do with lecturers.
The payment of Earned Academic Allowance, Revitalisation Fund, the payment of withheld salaries are not negotiable.
The revitalization fund will be released to universities.
One of the major demands is the demand for the deployment of the University Transparency Accountability System popularly known as UTAS.
UTAS was developed after ASUU got the permission from the government to develop an alternate system to the IPPIS
According to ASUU, the IPPIS doesn’t recognize some of the peculiarities in the NUS( Nigerian University System). Note that lectures in universities are entitled to allowances such as earned allowances, sabbatical allowances among others, IPPIS doesn’t recognize this
At the height of the ASUU strike of 2020, the minister of labour and employment, Chris Ngige told ASUU that FG had agreed for the union to develop an alternate payment platform. UTAS was developed and according to plans, will be under the control of the NUC.
Unfortunately, the government is yet to accept UTAS despite the numerous tests conducted by NITDA. The government has continued to insist that UTAS failed integrity tests conducted by NITDA
Release of the white paper of visitation panels to Universities.
The Federal Government constituted a panel to look into the issues at various tertiary institutions in the country. It is believed that the report will help to know and understand the issues of NUS
Till now, the Federal Government has refused to release the report of the visitation panel. If released, the report may indict some VCs, officials among others
Proliferation of Universities.
Another concern of ASUU is the proliferation of universities by the government. According to ASUU, the government has no business establishing new universities if it can’t fund the existing universities.
ASUU wants to stop lawmakers who continue to present bills to create universities. According to a report , over 186 bills were presented by the 9th NASS in four years for the creation of new universities. This is as existing universities remain underfunded.
Finally, the Renegotiation of the 2009 agreement. The truth is that if the president fails to sign the new agreement that has been drawn up, the union may not resume. Truth is that university lecturers have been on the same salary scheme since 2009. Despite rising inflation.
Source: Daily News