The stage is set for the striking Academic Staff Union of Universities (ASUU) to call off the over five month old strike as the National Executive Committee (NEC) of the union holds a crucial in Minna tomorrow (Monday) to rectify the Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) signed with the federal government.
The meeting which is being hosted by Federal University of Technology (FUTMINNA) branch of the union was in fulfillment of the one week promised by ASUU President, Dr. Nasir Isa Fagge last Wednesday after the signing of the MoU with the federal government that members will meet to decide to call off the strike.
Like the last ASUU NEC meeting in Kano that was shrouded in high secrecy, the venue of today’s meeting is kept to only members of NEC, as the meeting may not be holding in either Bosso or Gida Kwano campuses of the University.
The agenda of the NEC meeting was also not made public, but a source within the union said that the meeting will among other things consider the MoU, the leadership will present documents to show government’s commitment, assess the impact of the industrial action and map out strategies on how to monitor and ensure implementation of the documented agreement.
A NEC member who spoke with our correspondent in confidence said, “we are here essentially to look into the MoU as ASUU President promised last Wednesday that members will review the development and decide to call off the strike. The meeting will also fashion out strategies for monitoring the implementation of the MoU”.
Asked if the meeting will be calling off the strike, our source said, “I may not be able to answer that but my thinking which is personal is that, if our leaders could sign the MoU with government last week, I think we are close to a truce”.
ASUU President had on Wednesday also gave hint of possible cessation of the action. According to Fagge after signing the MoU, “Within one week our members will meet and decide to call off the strike. We have a document here which shows that government is committed and all the things we demanded are in the letter.
“We will now take this document to our members and we are confident that our members will do the appropriate thing”.
Efforts to reach ASUU President and the FUTMINNA branch chairperson, Dr. Abdulfatai Jimoh failed. None of them could be reached for comment, but as at the time of filling the report yesterday about 30 members of the NEC were already in Minna for the meeting.
Federal government on Wednesday shifted from its hardline to sign an MoU at a meeting brokered by Nigeria Labour Congress (NLC) to implement decision reached with President Goodluck Jonathan during the historic 15 hour meeting with the union leaders.
Lecturers in all publicly owned Universities embarked on an indefinite strike on the 2nd of July, following the refusal of federal government to fulfill the 2009 agreement it had with the union and non-implementation of 2012 Mou.
The action that was climaxed when federal government gave a December 4 ultimatum for the striking teachers to return to classrooms or face mass sack.
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