Committee of Pro-Chancellors of State-owned Universities (COPSUN) has demanded that state governments should be allowed to negotiate wages with their workers.
According the committee, the rights of trade unions to demand for welfare of its members should be based on employer-employee relationship.
Specifically, COPSUN called for the removal of labour and wages from the exclusive legislative list of the 1999 Constitution (as amended) to allow state governments exercise appropriate control over their workers.
In a communiqué issued at the end of its 52nd Quarterly meeting at Abuja, the committee presided over by Mallam Yusuf Ali (SAN) argued that the structure and operation of the country’s federalism about public institutions established and owned separately by the federal and state governments under different legislations, have been a major problem of state universities.
While the committee expressed worried over the instability in the academic calendars of the state universities fostered by incessant strikes by the academic and non-academic staff unions, it appealed to the Academic Staff Union of Nigerian Universities (ASUU) to de-emphasise strikes as the major tool of negotiation with the federal government.
It also observed that the disruption of the academic calendars has adversely affected the quality of the nation’s universities, their products and research outputs, adding that the instability in the university system has negatively impacted the core values of education resulting in falling standards.
The committee said it will organise an international conference before the end of the year to consider the various challenges facing universities and proffer appropriate solutions.
It said the conference is its own contribution to the reform of tertiary education in Nigeria.