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FG, ASUU, inter-religious council to meet over ‘illegal’ strike: Ngige
By on February 24th, 2022. News
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The minister said the ongoing warning strike was illegal because the demands of the union were already being addressed since last year.

Minister of Labour Chris Ngige

Chris Ngige, Minister of Labour and Employment, says that the meeting with the Academic Staff Union of Universities (ASUU) will be reconvened on Monday, February 28, as it describes the ongoing strike as a breach of labour laws.

Mr Ngige said this on Wednesday while briefing journalists at the end of a marathon meeting between the government’s side and ASUU in Abuja

The minister said the ongoing warning strike was illegal because the demands of the union were already being addressed since last year, adding that the union did not go through the normal process of issuing a 14-day notice before embarking on the industrial action.


“I saw their letter in my office on February 18, which is last Friday and as you know, they started their action on Monday, February 14. So, it is a clear breach of labour laws. There are violations,” he said.

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The minister noted that the meeting with the union touched on all the five-point demands of the union and sorted out four of them with timelines for action.

He explained that the demands were not new areas, but issues already being addressed by the federal government.

“That is why I said we are shocked that they went on this strike. These issues were discussed November/ December last year, up to the time we paid the monies for the Earned Academic Allowances (EAA).”

Mr Ngige noted that there were known rates for allowances and any proposal not in sync with what the National Salaries, Incomes and Wages Commission (NSIWC) prescribed would not sail through.

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The minister asked ASUU to follow the normal route and work with the NSIWS in pursuit of their demands.

He advised ASUU not to intimidate the education ministry or its committee into coming up with things that were not in tandem with the normal rate, then the document would not fly.

Mr Ngige urged ASUU to brief their members appropriately and call off the strike before the expiration of the one-month duration.

“By Monday, we would have dealt with some of the issues they are talking about and return to them for further discussion. We will meet again with them and the Nigeria Inter-Religious Council (NIREC) and we take it from there,” he said.

(NAN)

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