Again, FG, ASUU meeting deadlocked as strike continues
The Federal Government and leaders of the Academic Staff Union of Universities met on Monday at the Ministry of Education headquarters, Abuja, to review the grey areas in the 2017 Memorandum of Action, trying to reach a middle ground.
The strike by the lecturers, however, continues as the meeting could not conclude on whether ASUU should return to work or not.
The meeting started around 5.10pm and stretched till 9.30pm, with the government delegation led by the Minister of Education, Adamu Adamu, and the Permanent Secretary, Sony Echono.
The PUNCH had reported exclusively on Monday that the two parties would meet over the strike action in the public universities which has now entered the fourth week.
The last meeting between the two parties was on Thursday, November 15, which lasted for six hours but was deadlocked as no resolutions were taken.
As of press time on Monday, a reliable source privy to the meeting told our correspondent that the discussions still centered on the contentious areas in the 2017 MoA.
He said, “The Minister of Labour and Employment, Chris Ngige, travelled out of the country and so, the negotiations have been taken over by the education minister and the permanent secretary. They are reviewing the MoA and it is a very meticulous process.
“The issues are about funding for revitalisation of public universities, earned academic allowances, salary shortfalls and pension matters. The two parties will try to look at the middle grounds in the issues. But you know that ASUU cannot call off its strike without going to consult in its National Executive Council members.”
The ASUU President, Prof Biodun Ogunyemi, in a brief session with journalists after the three-hour talks, said the negotiations with the government would continue.