Seemingly efforts to persuade members of the Academic Staff Union of Universities back to the negotiating table might have proved abortive as executive members of the striking union refused to take part in the inauguration of a seven-man committee set up by the Federal Government to renegotiate the existing agreements.
According to a source who was at the inauguration held at the Federal Ministry of Education, Abuja, on Monday, had observed that no ASUU official was present.
The Minister of Education, Adamu Adamu, however inaugurated the committee in the presence of the Executive Secretary of the National Universities Commission, Prof Abubakar Rasheed, and members of the panel led by Emeritus Prof Nimi Briggs, who is the Pro-Chancellor, Alex Ekwueme Federal University, Ndufu-Alike Ikwo.
Adamu further gave the committee a three-month timeframe to sort and renegotiate all the previous agreements the Federal Government entered into with ASUU, especially that of the 2009 pact.
Recall ASUU had maintained it would not be part of any fresh negotiation of the agreements, especially when the previous ones are yet to fulfilled.
“The inaugurated committee is expected to review the draft proposed FGN/ASUU agreement and has the following terms of reference:
“Liaise and consult with relevant stakeholders to finalise the position of the Federal Government on the issues in the draft proposed FGN/ASUU renegotiated agreement;
“Renegotiate in realistic and workable terms the 2009 agreements with other university-based unions;
“Negotiate and recommend any other issue the committee deems relevant to reposition the NUS for global competitiveness; and submit proposed draft agreements within three months from the date of inauguration.