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You are stifling varsities, ASUU accuses govt




The Academic Staff Union of Universities (ASUU) yesterday accused the Federal Government of aiding the rot in the tertiary education sector through parlous infrastructure.

The union said “this threat to peace in Nigerian university system is the refusal of government to pay arrears of earned academic allowances, a product of the FGN/ASUU Agreement of 2009 and one of the bones of contention in the 2013 ASUU strike.”

ASUU Coordinator, Benin Zone, Prof. Anthony Monye-Emina, in a statement yesterday in Benin City, the Edo State capital, alleged that government had not been disbursing funds to defray salaries in its universities.

“In universities where full salary is seemingly paid, deductions for co-operative societies, welfare associations, union dues and so on come in arrears. This implies that such deductions are accumulated to be able to make full payment of salary in subsequent months after which remittance is made.”

“ In essence, university staff savings are what is used to augment the shortfall. It is important to note that this accumulation of deductions/remittances is exclusive of tax deductions. This implies that tax deductions are remitted as at when due to the same government that does not feel obliged to avail the universities the full complement of their allocations. This development is in addition to shortfall in running, operational, logistics and other costs,” he claimed.

Monye-Emina decried government’s alleged failure to address the issues raised in the document, stressing that: “All of these now constitute a threat to the peace on universities’ campuses nationwide. ASUU is putting the public on notice on the government’s deliberate effort at stoking the embers of crisis.”

He said the union frowns on the alleged shortfalls in allocations and irregular payment of salaries.

Lamenting the neglect of the sector, the ASUU chief flayed the alleged non-adherence by government to the promise to inject funds periodically to rehabilitate facilities in the universities, a component of the memorandum of understanding (MOU) reportedly entered between both parties, culminating in the end to the 2013 strike.

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