FG to Meet SSANU, NASU over Dispute in Earned Allowances’ Sharing
By Onyebuchi Ezigbo
The federal government has fixed another round of talks with members of the non-teaching staff of universities on Thursday.
The meeting is to try and resolve the raging dispute between unions in the country’s university system — the Senior Staff Association of Nigerian Universities (SSANU), Non Academic Staff Union of Universities and Allied Institutions (NASU) and the Academic Staff Union of Universities (ASUU) — over the sharing formula for the N40 billion earned allowances recently approved by the federal government.
A notice of the meeting signed by the Deputy Director (Press), Mr. Charles Akpan, said the Minister of Labour and Employment, Dr. Chris Ngige, will be hosting a conciliation meeting between the representatives of the federal government and the Joint Action Committee of NASU/SSANU.
It said the meeting will take place on Thursday, 11th February, 2021at the minister’s conference room.
Both ASUU and the other unions are currently embroiled in a tussle over who gets more allocation from the package on the earned allowance.
While NASU and SSANU had alleged that the Federal Ministry of Education and the Office of the Accountant General of the Federation is unduly favouring ASUU members in the disbursement of the fund, the leadership of ASUU accused their non teaching staff counterpart of seeking to reap where they did not sow.
A joint action committee of SSANU and NASU listed some of their grievances to include alleged discriminatory disbursement of the N40 billion earned allowances, inconsistencies in the implementation of the Integrated Payroll and Personnel Information System (IPPIS), non payment of arrears of national minimum wage, delay in renegotiation of FG/NASU and SSANU 2009 agreement and non payment of retirement benefits of outgone members.
Other issues in contention are the usurpation of headship of non-teaching units by the teaching staff in clear violation of condition of service and establishment procedures, neglect and poor funding of state universities and non constitution of visitation panels for universities.
On its part, ASUU claimed that the N40 billion earned allowances was meant to settle arrears of earned academic allowances due to its members.
The President of ASUU, Prof. Biodun Ogunyemi, said that the approved N40 billion was part of the agreement to end its nine months nationwide industrial action.
At the last reconciliatory meeting between the federal government and the non-teaching staff unions, both sides agreed to set up a joint committee to resolve the dispute.