The Academic Staff Union of Universities (ASUU) has accused the Federal Government of manipulation as both parties could not reach a compromise in the lingering industrial action by the lecturers.
ASUU National President, Professor Abiodun Ogunyemi, while speaking on a Channel Television program, Sunrise Daily on Monday, berate the government for the inability of union members to return to class since March.
Professor Abiodun insisted that the University Transparency and Accountability Solution (UTAS) was the best alternative for the lecturers.
He noted that while progress was being made, the government has insisted that there was a transition period with which ASUU members would first be captured in the IPPIS before migrating to UTAS.
Ogunyemi also accused the government of playing a game of deception, saying it has failed to show commitment in resolving the impasse.
“What we need is a commitment; there is nothing like transition and what we are saying, in essence, is that government should just go ahead and pay what government has withheld- the salaries of our members, people have not been paid for eight or nine months in the account of not registering for IPPIS.
“Government should stop the arm-twisting and manipulation, going back to universities to ask them to go and enroll in IPPIS so that they will go and migrate to UTAS; people see it as a game of deception and we cannot trust them.”
The ASUU National President also added that it is not the place of the union to tell the government where to get the fund to address its challenges.
He further stressed the need for the government to show more commitment to the ongoing negotiations in order to ensure lecturers and students return to the classroom.
The Professor also highlighted some of the vital roles the union has played in ensuring public universities do not become a history in the country.
He noted that if not for the union’s effort, the fate of public universities in Nigeria would have been just like that of the primary and secondary schools.
“Each time people talk about the problem has been there for long, they don’t also appreciate the solution we have brought to the system to keep the system going.
“But for ASUU’s intervention, we would no longer have public universities today. Do we still have public primary schools? Do we still have public secondary schools? That is what will happen to public universities; “Professor Ogunyemi stated.
In a bid to end the lingering strike action, Federal Government and ASUU have been on the negotiation table for months, but both parties are yet to reach a resolution, as the Nigerian public university system continues to wallow in rot.