The Academic Union of Universities (ASUU), Kaduna State University (KASU) branch, said on Sunday that it has not pulled out of the ongoing strike as claimed by the university’s management.
The union made this known in a statement jointly signed by its Chairman, Dr. Peter Adamu, and Assistant Secretary, Dr Akos Ibrahim, and made available to newsmen in Kaduna.
The union dissociates itself from the purported circular released by the university authorities asking students and lecturers to resume academic activities on May 9.
According to the lecturers, the directive violates the position of the union in the current struggle.
“The attention of the union was drawn to a purported circular trending on social media platforms stating that KASU Management has pulled out of the current roll-over strike action declared by ASUU.
“Specifically, the memo dated April 26, 2022, directed all members of staff and students to resume academic activities by Monday, May 9, 2022.
“It is imperative at this point to clarify this and properly inform and educate the public that ASUU-KASU dissociates itself from the purported circular released by the university management.
“It purely violates the position of the union in the current struggle.”
The lecturers described the circular as a “ploy” to misinform the public, parents, and guardians, and to blackmail the union.
According to it, the university management has a right to open the university while members of the union also have the legitimate right to continue with the ongoing strike action.
“It is important to note that the management of the university is not the mouthpiece of the Union and cannot speak on behalf of the union.
“Therefore, the union advises parents and guardians not to allow their children to resume for now until the current roll-over strike action is suspended.”
The union explained that the ongoing strike is in the best interest of the university system and no amount of threat would cow the branch to withdraw from the current struggle.
It argued that the participation of workers in any industrial struggle is statutory and constitutional as outlined in Section 40 of the 1999 Constitution as amended.
It added that the International Labour Organisation and Article 20 of the Universal Declaration of Human Right, 1948, also recognizes the freedom of association of workers.
The union said that both statutes uphold the tenets that workers should be free to join any trade union without coercion by their employers or any authority.
“Therefore, the participation of KASU lecturers in the ongoing ASUU strike is legitimate and in line with Labour Laws both nationally and internationally.
“We want to thank our members for being resolute and committed to the struggle.
“We equally appreciated the students and parents for their understanding; civil society organisations and other stakeholders for standing by the union in the fight for the revitalisation of public universities in the country,” the union said.
The KASU management had on April 28 explained that Kaduna State Government has nothing to do with its decision to pull out of the ongoing strike by ASUU.
The management made the clarification while reacting to a report by some sections of the media that the Gov. Nasir El-Rufai-led administration has coerced the university’s management into resuming academic activities.
According to the management, the recent announcement on the resumption of academic activities is in line with the Academic Calendar that stipulates the continuation of lectures effective from May 9, 2022.
ASUU began an industrial action in February to press home its demand for the implementation of its 2009 renegotiated agreement with the Federal Government.