The Academic Staff Union of Universities (ASUU) in a move to press on with its demands has indicated that it will appeal the ruling of the National Industrial Court which ordered the striking lecturers to call off their ongoing industrial action and resume work.
This is coming a few hours after the National Association of Nigerian Students (NANS) condemned the court judgement mandating the ASUU to call off its 7-month strike, saying that the judgement betrays equity.
According to a monitored report from Channels Television, this was confirmed by ASUU’s lawyer, Femi Falana, on Wednesday hours after the ruling of the court, saying he was preparing the grounds of appeal at the time of the report.
The President of ASUU, Professor Emmanuel Osodeke, had while appearing on a Channels Televsion programme, indicated that the union might be appealing the court judgement when he condemned the judgement and said they were happy that the industrial court was not the final court.
Osodeke alluded to the fact that there were other higher levels of courts to appeal to if dissatisfied with a judgement and said that ASUU was will consult with its lawyer and take the next step.
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He said that the country may suffer for what the Federal Government is doing as he believes that thousands of lecturers will leave the country for greener pastures once the strike is called off because of the treatment being meted out to them.
What you should know
- The strike by ASUU has continued to take a toll on the nation’s education, especially the university system as academic activities in most government-owned universities have been grounded for over 7 months.
- ASUU had on February 14, 2022, embarked on a 4-week strike to press home their unresolved demands on the federal government.
- Some of the lecturers’ demands include funding for the revitalisation of public universities, which amounts to N1.1 trillion, payment of earned academic allowances, and adoption of the University Transparency Accountability Solution (UTAS) as a preferred payment option, instead of the Integrated Payroll and Personnel Information System (IPPIS), payment of promotion arrears and the renegotiation of the 2009 ASUU-FGN Agreement.
- Efforts to get the academics back to class have failed until now as several negotiations between the union and the government have failed.
- The Federal Government had in a legal action against the union after several failed attempts at negotiations, filed an application through its lead counsel, Mr James Igwe, for an interlocutory injunction, seeking an order of the court restraining ASUU from further continuing with the strike.
- Delivering a ruling on the government’s application, Justice Polycarp Hamman restrained ASUU from continuing with the industrial action, pending the determination of the suit.
- He ordered that the case file should be returned to the president of the Industrial Court for reassignment to another judge, as he is a vacation judge.