We embark on strike out of patriotism, says ASUU

Zonal Coordinator of the Academic Staff Union of Universities Lagos Zone (ASUU-Lagos) Comrade Adelaja Odukoya has said that lecturers do not like to go on strike but do it out of patriotism.

Speaking at a briefing at the University of Lagos ASUU Secretariat on Tuesday, Odukoya said like students, lecturers also suffered the negative effects of strikes.

However, while the lecturers do not like going on strike, Odukoya said they would down tools when other avenues fail to press home their demands.

The zonal coordinator said out of nine demands the union agreed with the Federal Government on, only two had been implemented to date, saying that the government was fanning the embers of war.

Odukoya said: “We are saying we are being pushed to the wall. What we are doing is sensitizing the government and calling its attention to its own misdeeds.

“People think we enjoy strike. What the average chairman hates is a strike action. We do not like it. It is difficult to prosecute. We do not want to go on strike but we are not afraid to do so.

“Like our students, we suffer tremendously as a consequence of any strike action. Industrial actions affect us in more ways than one – as parents who have children in Nigerian public universities; as lecturers who cannot ply their trade, denied their salaries during strikes while they continue doing their non- teaching duties of research and community development; stalled promotions; disruption of their planned professional activities such as workshops, seminars, conferences etc. that are indispensable for their career advancements.”

The lecturer said it was imperative for the public to note the government’s insincerity at meeting its demands nine months after the union’s last strike was called off last December.

While the government had set up visitation panels to the university, and partially effected the payment of promotion arrears to some members, the Zonal Coordinator said the government was dilly-dallying about the replacement of the Integrated Payroll and Personnel Information System (IPPIS) with the ASUU-developed University Transparency Accountability Solution (UTAS); implementation of the condition of service reviewed since 2012; withholding of check-off dues, among others.

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