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    HomeNewsFG Apologises to students, Parents over prolonged ASUU Strike

    FG Apologises to students, Parents over prolonged ASUU Strike

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    By Abdul Lawal, Abuja.

    The Federal Government on Friday tendered apology to the students of Federal government owned Universities and their parents over the 8 months old strike by the University Lecturers.

    In a statement issued by Deputy Director of Press, Federal Ministry of Labour and Employment, Olajide Oshundun in Abuja said,
    “Now that ASUU has decided to obey the judgement of the National Industrial Court by calling off the devastating action, we apologize to all students and parents,of which the Honourable Minister is one, for this unduly prolonged strike, which is  unwarranted ab initio”.
    Oshundun stated that , the Federal Government expressed gratitude to all Nigerians who participated in various ways in the negotiations,culminating in calling off of the strike and assured them that with the steps being taken so far , Nigerian students would be saved  the unpalatable experience of intermittent, prolonged industrial actions in the future.  

    The statement said “In a special way, the Minister of Labour and Employment, Senator Chris Ngige, expresses gratitude to the Honourable  Speaker,  Hon. Femi Gbajabiamila and the leadership of the House of Representatives.”

    The statement added, “We particularly  recognize the patriotic efforts of the Sultan of Sokoto, Alhaji  Saad Abubakar III, the former President of the Christian Association of Nigeria, Rev. Supo Ayokunle,  all members of Nigeria Inter Religious Council (NIREC) and  the Catholic Bishops Conference of Nigeria, whose wisdom and intervention raised a ray of hope while the strike was at infancy but for ASUU’s  intransigence to negotiation. 
    “We were forced to migrate the matter to the National Industrial Court of Nigeria (NICN),created by the 1999 Constitution as amended, for the settlement of industrial disputes because every channel of negotiation, including the tripartite plus in which eminent Nigerians participated in failed. 

    “We were left with no other option than to trigger Section 17 of the Trade Disputes Act .CAP T8, Laws of the Federation of Nigeria 2004 on dispute resolution mechanism in seeking the intervention of the National Industrial Court .
    “We wish to assure that with the decision, steps and measures being taken by the current administration of  President Muhammadu Buhari in holistic repositioning of higher education, a groundwork is being laid, of which we are confident, will save Nigerians this unpalatable experience of incessant strike in future. 
    “It is verily our hope that now that the strike has been called off, the National Industrial Court will deal with the substantive issues as contained in the referral letter by the Honourable Minister.
    “This is  to ensure that justice is given to all parties, including  ASUU and their employers- the Federal Ministry of Education who acts on behalf of  the Federal Government.”

    The Ministry expressed commitment to continued cooperation with both parties in finding amicable solution to other issues not placed before the industrial court, in finding lasting solution  to the instability in the university system. 
    “We certainly can’t be less grateful to the judiciary  for deepening our labour jurisprudence in upholding the essence of the 3rd alteration of the 1999 Constitution , especially as it relates to Sections 243 and 254A,” FG added.   
    Our Correspondent recalls that ASUU leadership of the public University, on Friday morning, conditionally suspended the eight month strike it commenced on February 14,2022.
    According to the university lecturers concerned, they embarked on the strike because government did not attend to some of their concerns, which include funding of public universities, welfare among other demands.

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