While the Academic Staff Union of Universities insist on going ahead with a week-long strike it planned, the federal government has described the intended action as ‘unconstitutional.’
The government’s stance was made by the Minister of Labour and Employment, Chris Ngige.
The government, however, also appealed to ASUU to rescind its decision to embark on the one week warning strike from November 16.
Ngige urged ASUU to shelve the strike to make room to address contending issues.
Ngige, via a statement issued by Samuel Olowokere, Deputy Director of Press in the Ministry, said shelving the strike would ensure wider consultation.
“The claims of nationwide consultations by ASUU cannot be true as the Ministry of Labour and Employment which is the chief conciliator of industrial relations disputes is yet to receive a direct petition from ASUU.
“This is against the Federal Government who is the jurisdictional employer,” he said.
He emphasised the need for a proper re-negotiation of the Collective Bargaining Agreement which ASUU reached with the previous administration through a clear channel of social dialogue.
He said channel of dialogue would consist of the immediate employer, the Ministry of Education, and the Labour Ministry.
Ngige explained that in view of the prevailing circumstances, the issuance of warning strike by union was unconstitutional.
“The body is yet to exhaust the conflict resolution mechanisms clearly mapped out in the labour laws,” he added.