The Congress of Nigerian Universities Academics (CONUA) on Wednesday appealed to the Academic Staff Union of Universities (ASUU) to reach an amicable agreement with the federal government over the lingering strike action by the union.
CONUA lamented the impact of the ASUU strike action which has kept students and lecturers of Nigeria’s public universities at home for about eight months.
However, speaking during a TV interview on Wednesday, CONUA National Coordinator, Niyi Sunmonu said it is time to find a solution so students and lecturers can return to the classrooms.
He however said his own faction has not been on strike but they are not able to teach.
“We’ve not been on strike, we just appeal to the Federal Government and our sister union (ASUU) to reach an amicable agreement so that the universities can be open so that we can go back to doing our teachings,” Sunmonu, said on Channels Television’s Sunrise Daily.
Naija News recalls amidst the crisis in the education sector, the Muhammadu Buhari-led Government on Tuesday presented a certificate of recognition and registration to the Congress of Nigerian University Academics (CONUA).
CONUA is a breakaway faction of the Academic Staff Union of Universities (ASUU).
The presentation was done on behalf of the government, by the Minister of Labour and Employment, Chris Ngige at the Conference Room of the Ministry, Federal Secretariat, Phase 1, Abuja.
We Expect To Have More Members
Speaking further during the interview session, Sunmonu stated that with the official recognition afforded CONUA by the government, the union is expected to have more members in the nearest future.
He revealed that the union has members in 17 universities in the country currently, with 600 members at the Obafemi Awolowo University (OAU) alone.
He revealed that they broke away from ASUU in 2018 due to “constitutional violations.”
“We expect to have more members with the recognition and registration by the Federal Government,” he said
We Are Not On Strike
According to the CONUA coordinator, members of the union are not on strike but are unable to teach because they were forced out of campuses due to the ASUU strike.
“CONUA as an organisation has not been on strike. There has been no time that a strike was declared,” he said.
He added that ASUU activities and decisions can’t prevail over CONUA anymore.
“ASUU is an independent union and it has no bearing over another union.
“We stopped teaching in OAU when the students were asked to vacate campuses. I had concluded all my lectures before our students were asked to leave OAU on 27th March this year,” Sunmonu submitted.