The Senate, yesterday, appealed to the Senior Staff Association of Nigeria (SSASU) and the Non-Academic Staff Union of Universities (NASUU) to cancel their planned nationwide strike, promising to help resolve their grievances. The Senate took the decision as a result of a point of order raised by Senator Barau Jibrin (APC, Kano North), drawing the attention of the Chamber to the looming strike by the Labour unions.
Consequently, the Senate resolved that it would engage SSASU and NASU with a view to amicably resolving their differences with their colleagues of the alleged neglect and bringing them into clarification of all contending issues as they related with their counterparts. Leading debate on the motion.
In his led debate Senator Jibrin said: “it is saddening that the Senior Staff Association of Nigeria Universities (SSASU) and Non-academic Staff Union of Nigeria Universities NASUU) have given notice of commencing an industrial action over a number of issues which if not addressed and resolved will truncate the smooth running of Nigeria universities in the country.
He expressed concerns that the issues raised by two unions were matters of concern with the relationship of the two unions with ASUU) and the alleged refusal by the federal government to heed to their request since 2006.
The lawmaker further observed that the grievances of the two bodies also included the delay in the payment of the gratuity and pension of their members and refusal to attend to other agreements earlier reached with the government.
He noted that the allegation of the two unions that ASUU was being accorded preferential treatment by the federal government should be looked into, noting that funds released, 80% was earmarked as academic allowances while the 20% is allocated to non-academic staff. He regretted that rather than accept what they were given by the federal government, SSANU and NASU were making fresh demands of the release of N20billion to non-teaching staff and allowance for 2009 to 2016.