Action Minister strikes fast: Shekarau ends 10-month poly strike, classes resume Tuesday

Posted by News Express | 12 July 2014 | 4,019 times

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The Academic Staff Union of Polytechnics (ASUP) has suspended its over 10 months strike, with the leadership directing the members to unfailingly resume work on Tuesday, July 15.

ASUP President, Chibuzo Asomugha, confirmed the suspension of the strike to newsmen in Abuja, saying that the action is meant to give government the benefit of doubt to look into their grievances again. He said the decision to suspend the industrial action was taken at a National Executive Council (NEC) meeting of ASUP held yesterday morning in Abuja.

The meeting came two days after the meeting of the ASUP leadership met with the new Minister of Education, Alhaji Ibrahim Shekarau, who pleaded with the union to end the strike while the contending issues are re-examined by his office.

Shekarau, who was sworn-in as minister on Wednesday and promptly handed the education portfolio, had reminded the striking lecturers of the implication of their action, stressing that it was not in the best interest of the nation.

“I want to appeal to the unions to prevail on their lecturers to go back to classroom while we come together and re-examine these grievances that has been raised,” he had said, adding:

“I make this appeal because the polytechnic sector happens to be the engine room for national development hence it cannot afford to be under lock and key for so long.

“Government is ever committed to the education sector and as a minister and with my pedigree as a teacher, I can assure you that government is committed to resolving these issues.

“Now that I have been briefed on some of the challenges, I will table the issues before the appropriate quarters where a more holistic view will be given to them.”

ASUP’s grievances include the non-release of polytechnics visitation white paper by the Federal Government; non-constitution of governing councils of six federal polytechnics; non- implementation of the report of the Needs Assessment of Nigerian polytechnics since 2012; and non-amendment of the Polytechnic Act since the last amendment in 2004.

•Photo shows Education Minister Ibrahim Shekarau.

Source: News Express

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