The Federal Government said it has discharged N163 billion to the colleges from the Tertiary Education Trust Fund (TETFund), however striking lecturers are slowing down in canceling their strike.
Sen. Chris Ngige, Minister of Labor and Employment, said this while tending to reporters after a closed door appeasing talk with pioneers of Academic Staff Union of Universities (ASUU) on Monday in Abuja.
The News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) reviews that the striking lecturers set out on strike on Nov. 5, 2018, to squeeze home their requests.
ASUU requests incorporated a few territories of comprehension in the execution of the Memorandum of Action conceded in 2017.
A portion of these areas incorporate shortage in pay rates of some Federal Universities’ workers & teachers, earned stipends, revitalization that were a piece of the 2009 assertion, among others.
As indicated by Ngige, today we have consented to support revitalisation.
“Government has released about N163 billion from TETFund account to universities.
“So, we have gotten some substantial agreement in most of the areas of the agreement.
“Most of the issues have being resolved, so they are going to go back to their members and present government’s offer to their council,‘’ he stated.
Ngige additionally said that the striking lecturers were not requesting N50 billion before they would cancel the strike.
He, in any case, included that if the aggregate sum of the association’s interest was collected its more than the N50 billion as the administration was paying in various compartments.
“These are debts of 2009, owed by the past administration, that is 2009 to 2012, so it is not our own debt and we have been doing a lot to settle these debts.”
“So, we will be reconvening at the instance of ASUU. They said they want to go and consult with their members and they cannot call off the strike without consulting with their members,’’ he said.
Prior, the minister had said that President Muhammadu Buhari had ordered him to guarantee that all matters having to do with the continuous strike in the college system were settled.
“The president has directed me to pass the night here until all issues that have kept our children away from schools are resolved and strike called off.”
“He has also directed me to impress upon you, the imperative of little sacrifice from all sides, knowing fully well that the revenue of the federation has dwindled from what it was before the present administration assumed office,” he said.
Ngige additionally said President Buhari was extraordinarily stressed over the circumstance in the college system, consequently his relentless & full way to deal with handling the decay through sufficient financing.
“Mr president told me to assure you of his determination to reposition our universities as he would do everything possible to cast the present challenges in our tertiary education to dustbin of history.”
Likewise, Prof. Biodun Ogunyemi, ASUU President, said that there were still some hazy areas in the proposition displayed by the Federal Government.
He said the association would take a great attention at the hazy areas & would return to the administration.
“The most critical area is the revitalisation, because it is central to our work, as academics and unless that area is addressed our members will have issues with ongoing action.”
“We also did not ask for N50 billion, we are saying that the minimum we expect government to release in order to reactive the revitalisation fund is N50 billion.”
“So, the strike is still on,’’ he said.