ASUU members’ action in Nasarawa State varsity worries gov

Gov. Abdullahi Sule

GOV. Abdullahi Sule of Nasarawa State has expressed displeasure over the decision of the Academic Staff Union of Universities (ASUU) members in the Nasarawa State University, Keffi, to stick to the ongoing strike in spite of government’s intervention.

Sule made his feelings known when he hosted members of the state university’s Joint Action Committee in Government House, Lafia, on Wednesday.

He said “after sticking out its (government) neck to accommodate some of the demands of ASUU members in the state university, the union refused to honour their part of the agreement by returning to classes.

“The state government accommodates some of the demands of the ubion in the university, especially by not invoking the no-work-no-pay rule.

“The government also grees to takeover the payment of salaries of staff of the university and the approval of N200 million as part payment of staff accumulated earned allowances”.

He wondered why his administration would fulfil part of the union’s demands as conditions for calling off the seven-month strike but the ASUU members in the university would renege and come out with further conditions.

“We took one-fifth of the outstanding N1 billion outstanding earned allowances and we will pay N200 million on the condition you will go back but if you don’t go back, I can’t be throwing money into unproductive ventures.

“I came from the private sector where people are productive. I can’t be throwing money into an unproductive environment. It just doesn’t make sense,” Sule said.

Sule said it was not the fault of government that NSUK staff were being owed two months.

He explained that his administration had continued to remit its monthly subvention to the university but the university had failed to augment by generating internal revenue as a result of the ongoing strike.

“For us, as a state, we have continued to give you the normal amount that we have been giving you but the university could not generate any internal revenue to complement.

“That is why you are two months behind. If the strike continues, it may stretch to three, four or even six months,” he stated.

The governor, therefore, called on the Joint Action Committee of the university to appeal to ASUU to see reason and call off the ongoing strike.

Sule said that his administration would continue to take steps towards ensuring that the state university remained among the best universities in the country.

Earlier, Chairman, Joint Action Committee of the Nasarawa State University Keffi Simon Yakubu said they were at the Government House to appreciate the governor for what he has been doing for the university.

He thanked the governor for his initiatives in the educational sector of the state, especially the ongoing employment across all the tertiary institutions in the state.

Yakubu also appreciated the governor for approving N200 million as part-payment of their earned allowances.

He also stated some of their pressing demands for the attention of the state government, including the payment of the members’ two months salary arrears.

“Pay the two months outstanding salaries, implement consequential adjustment for minimum wage and develop infrastructure, among others,” he told the governor.

The state university’s Joint Action Committee comprises the Non- Academic Staff Union (NASU), Senior Staff Association of Nigerian Universities (SSANU) and the National Association of Academic Technologists.(NAN)