FG-ASUU DRAMA: ASUU DEMANDS “UNREASONABLE”- FG

 ASUU has been rebuked for giving “unreasonable” condition for ending strike – Ministry of Education’s spokesperson, Ben Goong, said the demand of the body is ridiculous – Goong said the body cannot dictate how its members should be paid by the federal government. The Academic Staff Union of the Universities (ASUU) has come under attack as the federal government described the condition set by the body before it can end its strike as “unreasonable.” It would be recalled that ASUU said it would end the strike action after its home-grown University Transparency and Accountability Solution (UTAS) has passed the federal government’s integrity test. Speaking in an interview with The Punch, the association’s national leader and president, Professor Bidoun Ogunyemi, gave the assurance with questions popping up on when the lecturers will resume back to classrooms. This is when we’ll end strike – ASUU raises students’ hope after agreement with FG ASUU was expected to call off its strike and mandate lecturers to resume back to lecture rooms on Wednesday, October 21, after the agreement. Ministry of Education’s spokesperson Ben Goong said the demand of the body is ridiculous. But Okeowo said UTAS, which is a payment system developed by ASUU in place of the controversial Integrated Payroll and Personnel Information System (IPPIS), is still going through an integrity test handled by NITDA. Reacting to Okeowo’s statement, spokesperson for the Ministry of Education, Ben Goong, said ASUU’s demand is ridiculous because they cannot determine how they should be paid by their employers which is the federal government. “I don’t know whether you know how many groups, organisations and associations receiving a salary from the federal account. So, if everybody is doing their own platform, imagine how many payment platforms government will have to deal with it.”  Meanwhile, ASUU has raised an alarm over what the body termed as a deliberate attempt to strangulate public education in Nigeria. Speaking during a Town and Gown meeting at the African Hall in the University of Ilorin, Kwara state, ASUU president Ogunyemi said the lecturers’ body is being neglected by the federal government because “there were plans to make education inaccessible to the poor.”

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The Academic Staff Union (ASUU) embarked on strike since March this year over the FG government insistence that the union and it’s staff must enrol on IPPIS a payment system developed by the Federal Government and over the deplorable state of public Varsities. Till date nobody knows when the FG-ASUU debacle will come to an end.

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