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ASUU strike: ‘No headway as lecturers damn court order, fight on’

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By Adeleye Kunle

Despite Wednesday’s judgment by the National Industrial Court, Abuja Division, the prolonged industrial action by the Academic Staff Union of Universities, ASUU, is far from being over.

It was reported that the Court, while ruling in a motion filed by the Federal Government, ordered the lecturers to resume work immediately.

The Court invoked section 18 of the Trade Dispute Act and national interest of the Nigerian students to grant the request of the Federal Government for an order of injunction against the lecturers.

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Justice Polycap Hamman compelled the lecturers to go back to work.

However, the university lecturers, who have been clamouring for the payment of their withheld salaries, are not ready to give up very easily.

Before the government approached the court, it had tried using ‘no-work-no-pay to break the lecturers’ ranks. When that did not work, a certain breakaway faction also tried to scuttle the strike, but that strategy failed too, prompting the government to approach the Industrial Court.

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The judgement of the Court came as a big relief to the Federal Government, with the Minister of Labour and Employment, Sen. Chris Ngige, declaring that the Committee of Vice Chancellors would be asked to re-open the universities for teaching and learning.

A delighted Ngige said the judgment was a case of ‘no-victor, no-vanquished’, stressing that the ruling does not preclude further negotiation between the Federal Government and ASUU.

He said: “The ruling is in the best interest of the nation. It is a win-win situation for all of us- government, students, lecturers- all Nigerians indeed. I have just gotten the order of court asking ASUU to go back to work.

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“It is a sound judgment. It is ‘no victor, no vanquished’. You doctors in academics are for now members of ASUU, but, you are here, even though you have dissociated yourself and you are working. We want to thank you for working and teaching your students

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