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NLC calls for High-Powered Panel to address Industrial disharmony in university system

The Nigeria Labour Congress (NLC) has called on the Federal Government to immediately set up a High-Powered Panel to deal with industrial disharmony in Nigeria’s university system.

Ayuba Wabba

The Nigeria Labour Congress (NLC) has called on the Federal Government to immediately set up a High-Powered Panel to deal with industrial disharmony in Nigeria’s university system.

The NLC President, Mr Ayuba Wabba, said this in a communique he jointly signed by Emmanuel Ugboaja, NLC General Secretary on Wednesday in Abuja.

The communique was issued after a joint meeting with NLC and affiliate unions in the Education section which includes the Academic Staff Union of Universities (ASUU); Non-Academic Staff Union of Educational and Associated Institutions (NASU).

Others are the Senior Staff Association of Nigeria Universities (SSANU); and National Association of Academic Technologists (NAAT).

Wabba said that the overarching objective of the meeting was to take reports on the ongoing industrial dispute cum action in Nigeria’s University system.

According to Wabba, “our concerns include the intermittent and protracted strikes and other industrial actions in Nigeria’s public tertiary education system.

“Non-Implementation of Collective Bargaining Agreements signed with unions in Nigeria’s tertiary education system which touch on university funding, earned allowances, and other welfare issues facing universities staff are also of concern to us,’’ he said.

Wabba added that the fate of more than 95 per cent of Nigerian students, made up largely by children of the poor who cannot afford to pay the average of N1 million school fees charged by private tertiary institutions, is hanging in the balance.

“Also, there are those who are currently idling away at home while the children of the rich continue with their education,’’ he said.

He, however, noted that in the light of the foregoing concerns, the meeting resolved to call on the Federal Government to immediately set up a High-Powered Panel.

He said the panel should be made up of members with requisite mandates to resolve within 21 days the foregoing issues affecting industrial harmony in Nigeria’s university system.

“In pursuant of the foregoing resolution, the Nigeria Labour Congress would be convening a Special Meeting of the Central Working Committee (CWC) of all the Affiliate Unions of the Congress to decide on the next line of action,’’ he said.

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