The federal government on Monday announced the cancellation of a meeting rescheduled with the leadership of the Academic Staff Union of Universities (ASUU) over the on-going strike embarked upon by the university lecturers.
The meeting, which was convened by the Minister of Labour and Employment, Chris Ngige, to iron out some issues that had prolonged the strike, was earlier scheduled to hold last week but it was postponed following a misunderstanding between the parties.
The cancellation disclosure was made known via a short text message by the Deputy Director of Press and Public Relations in the Federal Ministry of Labour and Employment, Charles Akpan, on Monday, which was made available to journalists.
Reasons as to why the meeting was cancelled was not stated.
He wrote, “Good morning colleagues. Please note that the meeting with ASUU earlier scheduled for today is cancelled.”
However, the ASUU President Prof. Biodun Ogunyemi when contacted on the development of the meeting, said the union’s leadership did not agree on any meeting with the federal government as consultations on both sides were still ongoing.
“We never actually agreed on any meeting. What we said was due consultations, and consultations are going on at the two levels. We believe the government’s side is also consulting. That’s why the meeting has not held.
“So, consultations are going on. Thank you,” Ogunyemi said.
Ripples had reported that the federal government had during the November 27 meeting with the union, pledged to pay N40 billion as the Earned Allowance and N30bn for the revitalization of the university system bringing the total payment to N70 billion.
The nine-month old strike, which was compounded by the introduction of the Integrated Payroll and Personnel Information System (IPPIS), had paralysed academic activities in all public universities