Abuja — The Federal Government has met all the demands of the three non-academic staff unions in the universities, the Minister of Labour and Employment, Dr. Chris Ngige has said.
Ngige, who spoke yesterday on the on-going strike by Non-Academic Staff Union of Universities and Associated Institutions (NASU), National Association of Academic Technologists (NAAT) and Senior Staff Association of Nigerian Universities (SSANU), faulted the on-going strike based on non-implementation of the memorandum of settlement between the unions and the Federal Government.
He said the government had not only fully met all the 12 conditions raised in the pact with the workers on September 20, 2017 but had complied faithfully with the timelines for the implementation of the agreement.
The minister urged the joint action committee of the three unions to make a fresh case in respect of the disbursement of the N23 billion earned allowances.
Ngige said it was important for Nigerians to be informed that the Federal Government had fully complied with its own part of the agreement and asked the striking workers not to blame the Federal Government for the "skewed disbursement formula" for the N23billion. "The Joint Action Committee of Non-Teaching Staff came with a 12-point demand. We sat over it and agreed on all, on September 20, 2017.
As I speak, the Federal Government has fully implemented the major contemporary issues such as payment of shortfalls and registration with PENCOM in the agreement. The only grievance the unions have today is that the modality for the disbursement of the N23 billion the Federal Government released for the settlement of earned allowances is skewed against them.
"But I advised them during the negotiation to call off their strike when it entered the fifth day and quickly forward their own template for accessing this N23 billion meant for the academic and non-academic staff of the universities, since the Academic Staff Union of Universities (ASUU) had already submitted. They bluntly refused and dragged the strike for weeks."
The minister urged the unions to immediately call off their strike threatening to invoke the relevant section of the labour laws on no work, no pay.