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Court orders ASUU to call off strike

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The national industrial court of Nigeria (NICN) has ordered the Academic Staff Union of Universities (ASUU) to call off its ongoing nationwide strike.

ASUU has been on strike since February 14 to press home the demand for improved funding for universities, a review of salaries for lecturers, among other issues.

Several meetings between ASUU and the federal government have ended in a deadlock.

Consequently, the federal government went to court to challenge the strike.

 

James Igwe, counsel to the government, prayed the court for an interlocutory injunction restraining ASUU from taking further steps as regards the strike, pending the determination of the substantive suit.

Igwe said the suit was filed in national interest, adding that the strike will result in irreparable damage to Nigerian students and to the country.

The counsel had submitted that section 18(1)E of the Trade Disputes Act provides that employees cannot be on strike when a matter is before the industrial court.

 

Opposing the application, Femi Falana, counsel to ASUU, said asking the union to resume work is “wrong and scandalous”.

He said there would not have been a need to embark on any strike if the applicants had kept to various agreements and MOUs reached in the past.

He also said the injunction was not necessary as there is no urgency since the strike had lasted for seven months.

Ruling on the application on Wednesday, Polycarp Hamman, the judge, granted the application.

 

He held that the strike is detrimental to public university students who cannot afford to attend private tertiary institutions.

He said the TDA mandates workers not to embark on strike once an issue has been referred to the industrial court.

“The balance of convenience tilts in favour of the applicant,” he held.

“I hold that this application is meritorious and this application is granted.”

 

The court therefore restrained “ASUU, whether by themselves, members, agents, privies or howsoever called, from taking further steps and doing any act in continuance of the strike action pending the hearing and determination of the suit filed”.

The judge also refused to fine the federal government as demanded by ASUU.

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Education

ASUU to hold emergency meeting tomorrow over suspension of strike

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ABUJA-THE striking Academic Staff Union of Universities, ASUU, will convene emergency National Executive Council, NEC meeting on Thursday, to review recent developments, especially the positive response from the federal government to its demands.

Preparatory to the meeting expected to take place at its headquarters in Abuja,the union has directed its zonal branches to collate the views of members through vote during the meetings expected to hold tomorrow in its various zones across the country.

The outcome of the meeting would result in suspension of the strike on late Thursday or Friday morning.

This came as report had emerge in the social media space earlier on Tuesday, claiming that the union had called off the almost 8-month old strike and subsequently directed members to resume academic activities on October 17.

ASUU president, Prof. Emmanuel Osodeke, while responding to enquiry to that effect, dismissed the report, saying the strike was yet to be suspended.

He, however,said the union was working towards the suspension of the action, saying the action would be dependent on the views of members from the zonal meetings.

The latest action of the lecturers’union came following the intervention of the Speaker of the House of Representatives,Hon. Femi Gbajabiamila.

The Speaker had on Monday,after a meeting with ASUU president and other members,assured that the strike would be suspended very soon, saying his meeting with President Muhammadu Buhari over the union’s action was fruitful.

Earlier,human rights lawyer and counsel to ASUU,Femi Falana,SAN, had also said the union would soon call off its nearly eight-month old strike.

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Education

We’re hopeful of end to strike in few days, says ASUU

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PRESIDENT of the Academic Staff Union of Universities, Emmanuel Osodeke, said yesterday the union was optimistic of ending its strike soon, noting that for the first time, there is light at the end of the tunnel

It will be recalled that the Appeal Court had last Friday, ordered the union to ask its members to return to work within, after it (union) appealed an early order by the National Industrial Court of Nigeria, NICN, to resume.

Osodeke, spoke yesterday at a meeting with the leadership of the House of Representatives, whose speaker, Femi Gbajabiamila, and his team recently intervened in the disadreement between the federal government and the union on the strike which had been on for eight months.

He said: “Please, let all of us work together to put a beautiful end to this thing we have started, so that every Nigerian will be proud that we have universities we can be proud of.

“Once again, I want to thank you, I also extend our appreciation to the president for intervening, I want to appeal that in the future, we should not allow strike to linger. Strike should not go beyond two days.

“If the way the National Assembly has intervened, if we had done that long ago, or those in charge of labour and education had done exactly this, we would not be where we are today. We would not have stayed more than two or three weeks on this strike. There is strike all over the world, UK, US, all over, but they don’t allow it to last.

“So, once again, thank you very much and we hope that working together, in the next few days, we can put an end to this particular imbroglio in the Nigerian educational system.”

The meeting was called at the instance of the speaker to brief the union about the intervention of the House with President Muhammadu Buhari on the strike.

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Education

UNILAG appoints new bursar

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The Governing Council of the University of Lagos has appointed Mrs Oluwafunmilayo Adekunle as the new Bursar of the university.

Adekunle’s five-year tenure as the bursar of the institution will commence from Thursday, November 3, 2022.

This is contained in a statement released by the Communication Unit of UNILAG on Thursday.

The statement read, “The Governing Council of the University of Lagos, at its meeting on Thursday, October 6, 2022, approved the appointment of Mrs. Oluwafunmilayo Yetunde Adekunle as the new Bursar of the University.

“Her tenure is for five (5) years with effect from Thursday, November 3, 2022.

“Mrs. Adekunle until her appointment was Deputy Bursar, Treasury. She joined the services of the University in 2005.

“She holds Bachelor and Master’s degrees in Accounting from the University of Lagos. She is a fellow of the Institute of Chartered Accountants of Nigeria (ICAN).

“Mrs. Oluwafunmilayo Yetunde Adekunle takes over from the current Bursar, Dr. Lekan Lawal, whose tenure ends on Wednesday, November 2, 2022.”

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