Lets work together to avert strikes in varsities - FG appeals to ASUU - NEWS FRONTIER DAILY


Tuesday, January 9, 2024

Lets work together to avert strikes in varsities - FG appeals to ASUU

The federal government has solicited a good working relationship with the Academic Staff Union of Universities, ASUU, to ensure that issues of strikes are averted in the nation's ivory tower.

The Minister of Labour and Employment, Barr. Nkeiruka Onyejeocha, made the call at a round table discussion between the federal government and the leadership of ASUU on the way forward to ensure smooth academic session in Nigeria in 2024 and beyond

The Minister urged the leadership of ASUU to join forces with the government for the sake of national progress, adding that it was time that every sector of the country, including education, moved on the same pace to achieve the current administration's Renewed Hope Agenda. 

The Minister in a statement issued by Olajide Oshundun, Director, Press and Public Relations in the ministry said, aside being a product of the university system, her desire was to shift the role of the Ministry of Labour and Employment beyond simply mediating disputes during strikes. 

According to her, "We should be part of the process to ensure such actions are averted," she declared, advocating for proactive problem-solving rather than reactive conflict resolution."

While craving the indulgence of the union to allow the ministry know its problems, the Minister said she believed that with mutual understanding, the two parties could work together to move the country in the same direction. 

Addressing the leadership of the union, led by its President, Comrade Emmanuel Osodeke, Onyejeocha extended an open invitation for dialogue and complete transparency. 

She noted that by prioritizing open communication and proactive problem-solving, both parties can work together to ensure a smooth academic session in 2024 and beyond, paving the way for a vibrant and flourishing educational landscape

She said, "I crave your indulgence to allow the ministry to know all the issues you think we should know. I want us to be on the same page, from item one to the last, for the sake of the Renewed Hope Agenda.

"Labour Ministry is not supposed to be reactive but be proactive. We should be part of the process to make sure that every issue is addressed.

"I am a product of the university system. We want to be on the same page because of the renewed hope agenda."

Emphasizing the critical role of education in the nation's future, Onyejeocha reiterated the need for unity and shared direction. 

"We have to move at the same pace. I believe that we can move at the same direction," she said.

Demonstrating President Bola Tinubu's dedication to reviving Nigeria's education system, the Minister emphasised the government's commitment to prioritizing education, pointing to the recent "student loan approval" as a tangible example.

She told ASUU leaders to consider the current economic realities when framing their demands. 

While acknowledging past agreements, she gently appealed for pragmatism, suggesting that some goals might need reevaluation in light of the nation's financial constraints.

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