Onyebuchi Ezigbo in Abuja
The federal government and Academic Staff Union of Universities (ASUU) have resolved to carry out regular review of the progress made in the execution of Memorandum of Agreement (MoU) reached by both parties.
Speaking at the end their meeting last night, the Minister of Labour and Employment Senator Chris Ngige said the discussion was very fruitful.
He said they had agreed to reconvene before the end of May.
Speaking on the issue of the N30 billion revitalisation fund, the minister said they looked at the payment and how to streamline the outstanding payment into the national budget or into a special system fund.
Ngige said they also discussed the issue of check- off dues, adding that both OAGF and ASUU were asked to go back and look at their records and reconcile issues
With regards to Earned Academic Allowances (EAA), Ngige recalled that the government paid N40 billion to all the unions while the National Universities Commission (NUC) provided a formula, which was used for sharing it among all the university workers.
“We had pockets of protest and we managed it. Today, we also agreed to find a way to accommodate the balance in order to pay all as and when due.
“We also looked at salaries that were not captured by the office of the Accountant General of the Federation (OAGF), resulting in some lecturers not having their full amount of payment since December or January 2020. We felt that such a thing should not arise. Notes were exchanged by the office of Accountant General and ASUU leadership. So, we want them to go back and cross check.”
“We also looked at the issue of UTAS and also made certain recommendations which will be communicated to the Minister of Communication and Digital Economy, who heads the supervising ministry, to enable them fast forward the various tests that are needed on the UTAS system like stress test, integrity test and the rest of them.
The President of ASUU, Professor Biodun Ogunyemi said
the union was satisfied with the periodic review of the agreement so to prevent tension and resort to further industrial action.
“Put together, we want to agree that we had fruitful discussions and we have strong hopes that there will be fruitful and harmonious relationship in achieving the provisions of the MoA of 2020.
“We want to agree that it is a departure from the past because, now, we have agreed on intermittent or periodic review of the MoA so that areas that will create tension will be apprehended before matters degenerate,” Ogunyemi said.