The new faction of the Academic Staff Union of Universities, the Congress of Nigerian University Academics, CONUA has reiterated that the Union of lecturers will resolve the imbroglio affecting Nigerian universities, especially on strike.
The national coordinator of CONUA, Niyi Sunmonu explained the need to democratize the University settings, saying that the issues of universities should be looked at from a different angle.
He added that the Universities should not have a fixed perspective on issues, affirming that it should not be “only this or that”
In his speech on Arise Tv news on Tuesday, Sunmonu said that using strikes as a tool to make demands had been for over 40 years, adding that in the period of the 40 years, there have been different kinds of government.
He said, “We are of the opinion that these agreements, to us, are actually done under duress; where you have the situation in which the other party which is the government that you’re actually discussing with, comes to a meeting with a relaxed mind that once they have an agreement that is workable; when they put pen to paper to sign, they would honour that.”
He said that even in situations of outright wars, “issues are resolved at the table; why can’t we devote more time to that so as to avoid casualties? In this case, the casualties are parents and students.”
“We want to deploy all our faculties, all our networks to the area of discussions at the table that will lead to a win-win situation; discussions that will lead to an agreement that the other side will not feel it’s being compelled to do,” he said.
However, in a bid to reduce the influence of ASUU, the Federal Government registered two unions in the University system which CONUA and the National Association of Medical and Dental Academic are included.
According to Chris Ngige, the minister for Labour and Productivity, while presenting the certificate , the two unions will operate together with ASUU.
The Academic Staff Union of Universities, ASUU has embarked on strike since February 14, seeking improved welfare condition of its members and the University system, and the replacement of the government-introduced payment platform- Integrated Payroll and Personnel Information System, with the University Transparency and Accountability Solution.