by ‘Jola Sotubo
Following the disclosure of a new set of conditions upon the fulfillment of which they would call off the strike, the Academic Staff Union of Universities (ASUU) has refuted claims by the Supervising Minister of Education, Nyesom Wike, that its demands are ‘outrageous’.
The academic body presented the Federal Government with a list of three new requirements that it expected to be met before the four month old strike could be called off.
The Education Minister, in response, is reported to have said that the new demands made by the striking lecturers were outrageous.
ASUU’s national treasurer, Dr Ademola Aremu while speaking in an interview in Ibadan, said the union appreciated the intervention of President Goodluck Jonathan but noticed that some of the resolutions reached with Jonathan was not added in the letter sent to the union.
The union said it wanted President Goodluck Jonathan to facilitate the endorsement of resolutions reached with him and signed by high ranking government official preferably the attorney-general of the federation but not a permanent secretary.
ASUU said a representative of ASUU including the president of Nigeria Labour Congress should stand as witnesses.
The union said it wanted the N200 billion agreed upon as 2013 revitalisation fund for public universities to be warehoused with the Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN) and disbursed to the benefiting universities.
According to ASUU, the supervising education minister was economical with the truth by not telling Nigerians that apart from the N30billion earned allowances released for university staff, the government was yet to release the N100billion it had publicised to Nigerians that it had.
It said as a community of intellectuals, ASUU was being cautious against the backdrop that the secretary to the government of the federation, Anyim Pius Anyim had rubbished the 2012 Memorandum of Understanding (MOU) on the ground that it was signed by a permanent secretary in the Ministry of Education in the person of Professor Nicholas Dimanche.