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Strike Action to Linger Till May – ASUU

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The Academic Staff Union of Universities (ASUU) has disclosed in a statement that its strike action has been extended by two more months. The union revealed this decision at a prolonged meeting of the National Executive Council (NEC).

The NEC meeting was held at the union’s national secretariat at the University of Abuja. The meeting was said to have started on Sunda, 13th March and stretched to early Monday, 14th March.

During the meeting, ASUU accused the Nigerian government of insensitivity and peddling lies, stating that the Muhammadu Buhari-led country is not paying close attention to the union. “Yes, we have extended the strike by eight weeks pending when the Nigerian government would find the university system worthy of the desired attention,” A member of the NEC who preferred anonymity told newsmen.

The spokesperson also revealed that a secular is currently being drafted to that effect and will be available soon.

Investors King recalls that the union had, in February, warned the Nigerian government against misleading the public.

ASUU also denied the alleged failure of its proposed University Transparency and Accountability Solution (UTAS), by the National Information Technology Development Agency (NITDA). ASUU President, Mr. Emmauel Osodeke, revealed this in a statement made available to newsmen on Sunday in Abuja.

The Minister of Communications and Digital Economy and Director-General, NITDA, Mr Isa Pantami, had earlier accused the union of failing both at the UTAS and at an ‘integrity test.’

Speaking to journalists, the president of the union revealed: “This press statement is necessitated by the need for ASUU to put the records straight on the grounds already covered in our patriotic struggle to get the government to deploy UTAS as a suitable solution for salary payment in our university system. Let us put it on record that an integrity test was carried out by NITDA on Aug. 10, 2021, in NUC where relevant government agencies and all the end-users in the University system were present. At the end of the exercise, all, without exception, expressed satisfaction with UTAS as a suitable solution for salary payment in our universities. This was attested to by the report coming from NITDA then to the effect that UTAS scored 85 per cent in User Acceptance Test (UAT).”

Emmanuel also disclosed that the NITDA Technical Team, had conducted a comprehensive functionality test that reported that out of 687 test cases, 529 cases were satisfactory, 156 cases queried and two cases cautioned.

The union’s worry is that while the process is still ongoing, the NITDA went ahead to claim that ASUU had failed the integrity test.

The update has sent a wave of many Nigerians who have taken to the social media platform, Twitter, to tweet their reaction.

Many have pointed out how the strike has affected them and how the country’s education should be placed in a state of emergency.

Here are a few reactions

Education

Cloud-Based Analytics Platform Class54 on A Mission to Drive Exam Success Rates For Students

Class54 has unveiled tools that use Artificial Intelligence (AI) to enhance high success rates for students preparing to write the Nigerian university entry examination and the Unified Tertiary Matriculation Examination.

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Class54, a Nigerian startup that offers an all-in-one solution for students to prepare for exams efficiently, has unveiled tools that use Artificial Intelligence (AI) to enhance high success rates for students preparing to write the Nigerian university entry examination and the Unified Tertiary Matriculation Examination.

With a mission to empower students by providing them with a quick revision guide, exam simulator, question engine, and cloud-based analytics platform, students can practice from the comfort of anywhere they are.

All they have to do is to download and install the Class54 mobile app which is available on both iOS and Android or the Windows desktop software to get started.

Class 54 has a rich plethora of well-explained past and curated questions by experts which help students prepare for and pass their examinations with excellent grades.

Students can also access the summary of recommended novels, practice questions by their preferred topics, or practice questions by how hard or easy they prefer them to be.

Instructions on each subject are presented with detailed explanations for every question, complete with clearly labeled diagrams. To boost adoption among target users across Nigeria, the applications have been optimized to work even with limited internet access.

To access the platform to begin practice, it costs a token of NGN1,000 for One-month access, NGN1,500 for 3-months of access, and NGN3,000 for 1-year access.

Speaking on the solution, Co-founder and Chief Technology Officer Oluwasegun I’ve said, “We have built an amazing technology based on artificial intelligence which helps students improve their grades in a record time as they prepare for major examinations in Nigeria.

“Our technology tracks their progress and recommends the next-best action to take to get the best grades in their examinations. This has enabled us to raise the average pass rate for candidates who used the class54 App in the 2022 JAMB examination to 73.54%, up from the 21% national average just in our first year alone.”

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Education

ASUU STRIKE: Federal Government Announced 23.5 per cent Increment For University Lecturers

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The Minister of Education, Adamu Adamu, on Tuesday, said the government has approved a 23.5 per cent salary increase for lecturers, while a 3 per cent increment will be enjoyed by professors. He noted that this was what the federal government could afford at the moment. 

The minister also disclosed that President Muhammadu Buhari (retd.) warned against signing agreements that the government will not be able to meet.

It will be recalled that the Academic Staff Union Of Universities (ASUU) has been on strike for more than six months. Some of their demands include salary increments, the acceptance of UTAS for the University system as against IPPIS and revitalisation funds for Federal Universities. 

During a meeting with Vice Chancellors and other stakeholders in the University system, Adamu said, “The Federal Government can only afford a 23.5% salary increase for all categories of the workforce in Federal Universities, except for the professorial cadre which will enjoy a 35% upward review”. 

He also said that a sum of N150 billion will be provided for in the 2023 budget as funds for the revitalisation of federal universities which will be disbursed to theinstitutions in the first quarter of the year while a sum of N50 billion will be provided for in the 2023 budget for the payment of outstanding areas of earned academic allowances which will be paid in the first quarter of 2023.

Speaking at the end of the meeting, the pro-chancellor of the National Open University of Nigeria, Professor Peter Okebukola, noted that the government was ready to go all out to ensure that the university lecturers return to school.

Meanwhile, ASSU has rejected the offer describing it “as inadequate to meet their respective demands needed to tackle the challenges confronting the university system.”

The union however demanded a 100 per cent salary increment from the federal government. 

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Education

ASUU Strike: University Union Rejects 35% Salary Increase For Professors, Demands 100%

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The Minister of Education, Adamu Adamu on Tuesday outlined the Federal Government’s efforts to resolve the industrial action embarked upon by Academic Staff Union of Universities on February 14.

Speaking at a press conference in Abuja, Adamu said the government had offered the union a 23.5 percent salary increase “for all category of the workforce in Federal Universities, except for the professorial cadre which will enjoy a 35% upward review.”

Adamu said the government had also promised that a sum of N150 billion “shall be provided for in the 2023 Budget as funds for the revitalization of Federal Universities, to be disbursed to the Institutions in the First Quarter of the year.”

Also, the government pledged a sum of N50 billion that would be provided “for in the 2023 Budget for the payment of outstanding areas of earned academic allowances, to be paid in the First Quarter of the year.”

However, ASUU and three other university unions who had been on strike, rejected the offer, Minister Adamu said, describing it “as inadequate to meet their respective demands needed to tackle the challenges confronting the university system.”

According to an ASUU source, the union is seeking over a 100 percent increase in salaries.

While other unions – NASU, SSANU and NAAT – have subsequently suspended their industrial action after further negotiations with the government, ASUU has instead extended its strike indefinitely.

“We have done the best that we can in the circumstance,” the Minister said.

Meanwhile, the Minister said the issue of ‘no work, no pay’ remains a major obstacle in the negotiations.

“In the spirit of sincerity, Government made it clear that it would not break the law,” Minister Adamu said.

“And on this, I must, openly and once again, thank all the Unions which made the sacrifice of understanding the position of Government on the matter.”

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