ASUU splits, new union emerge
A new academic labour union in Nigerian university system has been formed with the name Congress of University Academics (CONUA).
It has members drawn from the Ambrose Alli University, Ekpoma, Federal University, Oye Ekiti, Federal University, Lokoja and Kwara State university, Molete.
The union was, obviously, formed by aggrieved members of the Academic Staff Union of Nigerian Universities (ASUU) who claimed that ASUU has lost track of the main objective of the union.
National Coordinator of the Union, Niyi Ismaheel, told journalists at the end of their first national stakeholder forum at the Obafemi Awolowo University (OAU), Ile-Ife, Osun state, that the union was formed to formulate new approach of engagement in addressing welfare of members and to also put to an end to the unnecessary wasting of student’s academic time as a result of frequent strike action.
He said the union is putting necessary documentation in place for official recognition by the university management and the government.
Minister of Labour and Employment, Chris Ngige, in a telephone conversation with a journalist, in Abuja, confirmed he is aware of the union but said the union was yet to be registered.
He said: “I am aware of the union but they are not registered yet. They submitted their application for registration last April. A committee has been set up by the Ministry to look into their request.”
When ASUU President, Prof. Biodun Ogunyemi, confirmed knowledge of the union and linked it to some members who were sanctioned by the union for working against the interest of the union.
“In addition to that, we have realised that some Vice Chancellors, specifically that of Federal University, Lokoja and Oye-Ekiti, have vowed to destabilising the union by instigating rebellion against the union.
“They have tried all they could in the past to thwart our efforts are having a world class university community in Nigeria. They are now working through some members of the union but they would fail.”