Claim: A WhatsApp post claims ASUU has suspended its strike action indefinitely.
Verdict: The claim that ASUU has suspended its about eight months strike action is untrue.
A WhatsApp post circulated on Thursday, November 19, 2020, indicated that Academic Staff Union of Universities, ASUU, has suspended its ongoing strike indefinitely.
The post, containing a statement, supposedly issued and signed by the Union’s President on Wednesday, November 18, 2020, noted that the suspension was as a result of the union’s meeting with the Federal Government, sequel to the Memorandum of Action signed between the two parties.
In the letter, ASUU apologised to the students for inconveniences caused.
A portion of the letter reads: “The Academic Staff Union of Universities, ASUU, following a meeting held with the Federal Government on Monday 16th, November 2020 sequel to the Memorandum of Action signed between ASUU and the Federal Government, has on Wednesday, 18th November 2020, suspended the over seven months -old strike it embarked upon since Sunday, 4th April, 2020.
“The action of 2020 was suspended following the signing of a Memorandum of Action (MoA) in which the Federal Government of Nigeria (FGN) promised to address the contentious issues within a timeline that was to end in February 2021”.
It would be recalled that the Academic Staff Union of Universities, ASUU, in a statement made available on Sunday, November 8, 2020, in Abuja, had urged the Federal Government to leave the Integrated Payroll Personnel Information System (IPPIS) as a condition to call off its ongoing strike in the country.
ASUU had embarked on a nationwide strike on March 23, 2020, to press on its demands which, according to a Zonal Coordinator of ASUU, Prof. Ade Adejumo, includes: “The need for appropriate officers to obey universities’ laws and abide by collective bargaining agreements. “The need for the implementation of all outstanding provisions in the 7th February 2019 FGN/ASUU Memorandum of Action. “The need to re-commence and conclude the Re-negotiation of the 2009 FGN/ASUU Agreement, based on ILOs collective bargaining principles within the six-week timeframe originally set for it. “The need for Mr President, as a visitor to the Federal Universities, to constitute and activate Visitation Panels to all Universities and direct that the outcomes be fully implemented.” The ASUU chieftain also said that “Government should welcome ASUUs ongoing innovation of a more robust system.
In response to an inquiry by a Dubawa writer, ASUU President, Biodun Ogunyemi, tagged the post ‘FAKE NEWS!’
Corroborating, the Chairman of the Union at the University of Ibadan, Prof. Ayo Akinwole, debunked the rumour, saying the Union will release a statement to debunk it.
The Assistant Secretary of ASUU, UI Chapter, Dr Kazeem Olaniyan described the post as propaganda by the Government; noting that there is a process the Union follows before calling off a strike but such process has not been initiated.
“If they have a very successful and truthful negotiation, then, these our negotiation team of ASUU will go back to have a meeting with NEC after the meeting of POs (the POs are the Principal Officers), they will have a meeting with Zonal Coordinators, then they will have a NEC meeting. After NEC meetings, they will send words to the Branches that “this is what we got from the Government, what is the way forward? Should we call off the strike? If you are in support, say Yes, if you are not in support, say No”. All the branches of ASUU will now respond in their respective congresses, to take a decisive action whether to say this strike has ended or to say this strike still continues.”
Dr Olaniyan further stated that the decision of each Congress does not automatically take effect until it gets its decisions back to NEC, which then announces the result of the collated decisions and resolutions from the congresses.
Also speaking, the ASUU Chairman, UNILAG Chapter, Dr Dele Ashiru noted that the news is a lie from the pit of hell. He revealed that the Federal Government is not being sincere with the whole issue. The Chairman who is a member of the Union’s NEC, added that the Union still stands on the fulfilment of its demand.
Recently, Dubawa has done some fact-checks on claims by ASUU parody accounts on Twitter, such is the November 15, 2020, report by Daily Post claiming the Academic Staff Union of Universities (ASUU) asked students to prepare for resumption next week. The report, which was later found to be false, credited this statement to a post by what it described as ASUU’s official Twitter page.
Earlier, a news report claimed that ASUU urged students to acquire new skills, travel, and have fun, implying there is no end to the strike in sight. This was also found to be false as the tweet did not emanate from ASUU.
The claim that ASUU has suspended its ongoing strike indefinitely is misleading as ASUU has denied this.
The researcher produced this fact-check per the Dubawa 2020 Fellowship partnership with the Broadcastings Corporation of Oyo State, to facilitate the ethos of “truth” in Journalism and enhance Media Literacy in the Country.