Following the expiration of the ultimatum given by the Academic Staff Union of Universities (ASUU) to the federal government to implement its demands or face another round of industrial action, the union has said Nigerians will know its position within 24 hours.
ASUU president, Prof Emmanuel Osodeke, who stated this in an interview with journalists, said the union would declare its position shortly after consultations with its branches had been made.
ASUU had on November 15 given the federal government a three-week ultimatum over government failure to meet its demands.
The union threatened to embark on another round of strikes following the federal government’s failure to implement the Memorandum of Action (MoA) agreed upon.
Osodeke, at a news conference, held in Abuja had called on parents and all patriotic Nigerians to hold the government responsible if it failed to address the issues within three weeks after the news conference.
He said despite the unions meeting with the minister of labour and employment, Dr Chris Ngige on October 14, on major outstanding issues which include, funding for revitalisation of public universities and earned academic allowances, government has failed to do the needful.
Other outstanding issues, he said, were University Transparency Accountability Solution (UTAS), promotion arrears, renegotiation of the 2009 ASUU-FGN agreement, and the inconsistencies in IPPIS payment, which up till now had not been addressed.
“ASUU is fully committed to upholding academic integrity in the universities and is working to make them more globally competitive.
“We are equally committed to promoting industrial harmony in the Nigerian university system for as long as all stakeholders are willing and committed to play their part.
“We call on all vice chancellors, as the main drivers of the system to join us in this mission to safeguard the waning image of our universities.
“They have no business trading honorary degrees and academic positions for personal and immediate gains; thereby smearing the collective integrity of committed scholars and other patriots who are working day and night to uplift the system that produced them.
“Our union shall not shy away from taking the fight to administrators of Nigerian universities as well as internal and external agents who are bent on compromising the standards ASUU has consistently laboured to protect and improve.
“Government of Nigeria should be held responsible should ASUU be forced to activate the strike it patriotically suspended,” he said.
However, the ASUU president said the meeting held by the principal officers on Sunday resolved to proceed on consultation with branches as prescribed by ASUU’s laid-down role, after which a position will be taken.
The consultation, which he said, was ongoing, would be through within the next one day after which the union would come out with its position.