Exactly one year after the Academic Staff Union of Universities (ASUU) called off its eight months industrial action, President Bola Tinubu has approved the payment of their withheld salaries.
The latest directive was contained in a statement issued on Friday by the Special Adviser to the President on Media and Publicity, Ajuri Ngelale.
The government is however silent on the withheld salaries of other workers unions in the universities, who had also embarked on strike within the same period.
According to Mr Ngelale, the president invoked a “prerogative of mercy” to waive the earlier “no work, no pay” rule imposed on the workers by the administration of former President Muhammadu Buhari.
“Invoking the Principle of the Presidential Prerogative of Mercy, President Bola Tinubu has approved the partial waiver of the “No Work, No Pay” Order that was instituted against striking members of the Academic Staff Union of Universities (ASUU) following the commencement of their eight-month industrial action which began on February 14, 2022 and was terminated on October 17, 2022.
“In view of his determination to mitigate the difficulties being felt during the implementation of key economic reforms in the country, as well as his recognition of the faithful implementation of terms which were agreed upon during the fruitful deliberations between ASUU and the Federal Government of Nigeria, President Bola Tinubu has directed the grant of an exceptional last waiver of the “No Work, No Pay” Order on ASUU, which will allow for the previously striking members of ASUU to receive four (4) months of salary accruals out of the eight months of salary which was withheld during the eight-month industrial action undertaken by the union,” Mr Ngelale wrote.
When ASUU embarked on strike in 2022, the government cited Section 43(1)(a) of the Trade Disputes Act to impose the “no work, no pay rule” on the workers. ASUU, however, kicked against the position insisting that the government’s failure to fulfill its commitment informed the strike action.
Meanwhile, the leadership of the Senior Staff Association of Nigerian Universities (SSANU) has kicked against the decision of the government, even as it threatened to embark on another round of strike if its members’ withheld four-month salary was not paid alongside that of ASUU.
Speaking on phone with PREMIUM TIMES on Friday evening, the National Vice President of SSANU, Abdussobur Salaam, said the union would wait for the government’s decision before reacting.
culled from Premium Times Nigeria