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HomeTop NewsPresident Buhari to intervene in ASUU strike as university teachers to receive...

President Buhari to intervene in ASUU strike as university teachers to receive 100% pay rise

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President Muhammadu Buhari may meet all those involved in the negotiation before opening talks with the Academic Staff Union of Universities (ASUU) in a bid to end the protracted closure of Nigerian public universities.

ASUU has been on strike while all the public universities have been shut for over 100 days as lecturers are protesting the poor working environment in the nation’s tertiary institutions.

The lecturers have been on strike since February 14.

The source also confirmed that President Buhari has decided to intervene by meeting with all the parties.

The source said President Buhari will in the next few days receive a brief from the Federal Government negotiating team before having an audience with ASUU.

“The President has chosen to personally intervene to ensure that universities are reopened in the shortest time possible.

“Once he gets an update on the negotiation, he will meet with ASUU leaders to harmonise offers,” a source said.

A senior government official said: “The government is determined to end the strike in a short time.”

The Permanent Secretary, Federal Ministry of Education, Andrew Adejo, expressed confidence that the strike would end soon.

The Federal Government has shifted its position on the percentage of salary increase.

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A committee led by the Pro-Chancellor of the Federal University of Lokoja, Nimi Briggs, had recommended a 180 per cent pay rise for lecturers.

The Briggs panel has been renegotiating the 2009 pact with ASUU.

But the government was said to have favoured a 100 per cent increase, although options were still being weighed at a meeting last night.

A source, who spoke in confidence with our correspondent, said the Federal Government and ASUU may reach an amicable agreement in a “short time.”

“So far, the government may concede to a 100 per cent salary increase for the striking lecturers. This is a key part of the ongoing review of the 2009 FG-ASUU agreement.

“The payment of all outstanding allowances will be mutually agreed upon by both parties based on the nation’s economic situation.

“This is why the government is bringing in some ministries and parastatals to the negotiation table.

“They include the ministries of finance, education, labour and employment, Budget Office of the Federation, Office of the Head of Service of the Federation and National Salaries, Income and Wages Commission.”

Meanwhile, ASUU has been receiving massive support from both civil society and labour unions across board in a bid to end the shutdown in universities.

The Nigeria Labour Congress (NLC) had directed its state councils to mobilise for a protest in support of ASUU next Tuesday and Wednesday.

The Association of Nigeria Aviation Professionals (ANAP) on Monday threatened to shut down the airports in solidarity with the striking lecturers.

Also, the Coalition of Northern Groups Students Wing (CNG-SW) directed the 19 northern state chapters to mobilise students and parents to join the NLC protest.

The National Union of Banks, Insurance and Financial Institutions Employees (NUBIFIE) said it would join the protest.

National Universities Commission (NUC) Executive Secretary Abubakar Rasheed warned against weakening the university system, which he said was critical to economic development.

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