By Deborah Onyofufeke
The Federal Government has prayed the National Industrial Court for an accelerated hearing in its case against the Academic Staff Union of Universities, ASUU, bothering on the lingering strike, which the union embarked on since the 14th of February.
The case has been fixed for today, September 12 at the National Industrial Court in Abuja.
In the suit, the FG noted that, it has become necessary to expedite action on the case, since the lecturers’ union embarked on the strike for about seven months now and are not ready to call it off.
The Federal Ministry of Labour and Employment, in a referral instrument, in the trade dispute between the Federal Government and the Academic Staff Union of Universities, ASUU, dated September 8,2022, and deposed in the court on September 9,2022, stated that:
“In view of the fact that ASUU members have been on strike since February 14,2022, and have refused to call off the action, despite apprehension of same, it would be appreciated of this dispute is given accelerated hearing in order to bring the dispute to an end.”
The suit which was tagged: “Forwarding of a Referral Instrument in the Trade Dispute Between Federal Government/Federal Ministry of Education and the Academic Staff Union of Universities (ASUU), was addressed through the Registrar of National Industrial Court and signed by the Minister of Labour and Employment, Dr Chris Ngige.
The suit stated that the “Referral Instrument is raised in line with the powers vested in the Honourable Minister of Labour and Employment by trade dispute resolution mechanisms and the provision of Section 17 of the trade Dispute Act,CAP T8,Laws of the Federal Republic of Nigeria,(LFN) 2004.”
Joined in the suit are the President, Academic Staff Union of Universities, ASUU; Minister of Education; Minister of Labour and Employment and the Minister of Justice and Attorney General of the Federation.
National public universities lecturers in the country embarked on an industrial action since February 14, this year, to get the federal government to yield in to their demands.
Among the demands are payment of earned allowances and salaries for lecturers, improved funding and maintenance for tertiary institutions and adoption of the University Transparency and Accountability Solution,UTAS,for salary payment instead of the government’s preferred Integrated Payroll and Personnel Information System,IPPIS.