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How will universities fare in 2021?

Chukwuebuka.NwaforChukwuebuka Nwafor
  • 1
  • 10 Jan

One of the longest industrial action in our tertiary education sector was recently called off by the Academic Staff Union of Universities{ASUU}after about nine months of protracted negotiation with the Federal Government of Nigeria. The agreement was reached that the government will halt the implementation of the enrollment of university lecturers to the Integrated Payroll and Personal Information System{IPPIS}. Other issues addressed included the payment of over N40 billion earned and N30 billion universities revitalization fund which the federal government agreed to release in batches. The Union and the Government agreed to use a new payment system known as the University Transparency and Accountability Solution-UTAS.

However, barely two weeks after the agreement, ASUU is accusing the Government of not pushing forward with the agreement. With universities set to resume physical lectures on the 18th of January, here are scenarios of what might happen;

  • ASUU resumes strike in February- As sad as this may sound, there are already deliberation among some lecturers that this may happen. Many are already dismayed by how ASUU president, Prof Biodun Ogunyemi called off the strike without proper consultation with some chapters of ASUU. If the government doesn't hold up to her end of the bargain, then there is a likelihood the ASUU will resume their industrial action in February.
Chukwuebuka.NwaforChukwuebuka Nwafor
  • 10 Jan
  • NASU and SSANU Cripples Academic Activities- The Non-Academic Staff Union of Educational and Associated Institutions(NASU), and Senior Staff Association of Nigerian Universities(SSANU) embarked on their own strike in October. This was to protest the enrollment of their members on IPPIS as well as unpaid earned allowances. Already, they are unhappy with the sharing formula of the N40 billion earned allowance which alloted 75% to ASUU and just 25% to them. They are currently on strike and are expected to protest against their condition on the 12th and 13th of January 2020. Hopefully, the government will listen to them.

  • NANS finally wakes up?- For many years, the foremost students' organisation in tertiary education in Nigeria has been paralysed as a result of inept leadership and 'politicians' disguised as students' leaders. The National Association of Nigerian Students can decide to curb the decay in the education system if they stand up and demand accountability from the government, University administrators and lecturers. However, I wouldn't bet on that.