ASUU Protests In UniJos As Ultimatum To Commence Strike Draws Closer

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The Academic Staff Union of Universities, University of Jos has organised a protest on Tuesday to call on the Federal Government to act quickly on the demands of the Union to avert the impending industrial action.

Recall that the National Leadership of the Union had given the Federal Government two weeks to respond to its grievances over welfare and funding of the universities or face decisive action.

The Union stated that it will reconvene its NEC after two weeks to review the situation and take decisive actions.

While the 14-days Ultimatum is yet to elapse, the members of the union at the University of Jos, carrying placards disrupted the ongoing Second Semester examinations at the school as they marched through the university community singing solidarity songs.

The protesters later converged at the Senate building of the university where they were received by the top management of the institution including the Vice Chancellor, Prof. Tanko Ishaya; Deputy Vice-Chancellor, Administration, Professor Joash Amupitan (SAN) and the Registrar, Dr Rejoice Songden.

Speaking during the protest, the university’s ASUU Vice Chairman, Prof. Kiri Jaryum who led the protest lamented that the demands of the Union have been with the government for a long time, adding that the government has continued to play deaf to them.

He said the union could no longer bear the situation if the government failed to address their demands at the end of the 14-day ultimatum earlier given to the government by the National Executive Committee of ASUU.

“Our protest today at the University of Jos is in line with the 14-day ultimatum given by the National Executive Committee of ASUU and activities to be carried out by the various branches.

“As we are here, other branches within the Bauchi zone of ASUU which comprises six universities are doing the same thing.

“Our branch chairperson is away to coordinate similar protests in the zone as we are doing the same at the University of Jos and he has asked me to stand in for him.

“Our demands have been with the government for a long time and it is rather unfortunate that we are repeating the same thing because the government has been playing a deaf ear to them,” he said.

While handing over a 9-point demand of the Union to the VC, he listed part of the demand as the need for the government to pay them their earned academic allowances budgeted for in 2023, revitalization fund, and payment of salaries of members whose names were excluded from the IPPIS platform.

Others include the need for the government to stop the proliferation of universities, the need for the government to effect increment in their salaries which had stagnated in the past 15 years as well as the need for the government to return to the renegotiation table to sign the Nimi Briggs committee agreement among others.

Responding, the Vice Chancellor thanked members of ASUU for their peaceful protest in the institution and assured that he will submit the protest letter by the Union to the Federal Government.

He noted that the challenge of the Union also affected all members of the university community as some were still owed months of salaries.

“So, we are suffering and we understand what your demands are. In forwarding this letter, I’m also going to include item number 10 because the University of Jos can no longer provide electricity anymore with the recent increment in the electricity tariff,” he said.