NANS slams Court ruling ordering suspension of ASUU strike

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The Academic Staff Union of Universities has been ordered by the Industrial Court to end its seven-month strike, but the National Association of Nigerian Students (NANS) has challenged this order.

On Wednesday, the Nigerian National Industrial Court ordered the ASUU to end its protracted statewide strike.

Since February 14, ASUU has been on strike to raise awareness of its demands; which include more financing for universities and a reassessment of professors’ pay among other things.

ASUU and the Federal Government had held a number of discussions that came to a stalemate.

However, Giwa Temitope, the National Public Relations Officer for NANS, revealed that the decision breaches equity.

The student union representative argued that the court should have directed the Federal Government to resolve the issues with the striking lecturers; rather than ordering ASUU to return to the classroom.

NANS further alleged that this government cannot handle a crisis because they had to take ASUU to court.

The statement read, “Our attention has been drawn to news of a court judgment mandating the Academic Staff Union of Universities (ASUU) to call off its 7-month strike. As an association, we feel disturbed to read the news of the judgment because we believe that it betrays equity.

“Ordinarily, the Federal Government is not meant to have dragged ASUU to court. But, the fact that they had to drag ASUU to court is a signal that this government cannot handle crisis. And, we want to state categorically that the court cannot force members of ASUU back to lecture theatres.

“And, as it stands today, with that court judgment; we maintain that the court has not resolved the problem…We reject the judgment in strong terms. The court could have said that the Federal Government should go and pay; rather than say that lecturers who are on strike should go back to classrooms. We were expecting the court to have understood that lecturers are on contract of personal service. Hence, they cannot be compelled to render a service they don’t want to render.

“The only remedy to this strike action is for the Federal Government to accede to the demands of ASUU which the government willingly entered into with them and properly fund education.”

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