Following a National Executive Council (NEC) meeting of the striking university lecturers at the University of Abuja on Monday, the Academic Staff Union of Universities (ASUU) extended its six-month-old strike.
The strike was started by ASUU on February 14, 2022. The following day, it announced a four-week warning strike. The academics, however, prolonged it by eight weeks after a month, claiming that the government needed more time to consider their requests.
Due to the failure of the Federal Government and lecturers to negotiate an agreement, the union on May 9 prolonged the strike by an additional 12 weeks.
Among other things, university instructors want better welfare, the revitalization of public universities, and academic freedom. Meetings between officials of the administration and the ASUU have frequently come to an impasse.
Since the industrial dispute, a number of organizations and people have taken an interest. Femi Falana, a human rights attorney from Nigeria, is the most recent to ask the federal government to ratify the revised contract with the striking workers.
“Instead of engaging in the diversionary tactics of blackmailing ASUU, the Federal Government should ensure that the strike is called off by signing the Renegotiated Agreement with ASUU without any further delay,” Falana said in a statement he issued on Sunday.
He accused the Federal Government of resorting to blackmail ASUU, recalling how talks with the union ended in deadlock, a situation that dashed the hopes of many students.