Six-month strike: PTA demands FG, ASUU, parents’ confab
Six-month strike: PTA demands FG, ASUU, parents’ confab. The National Association of Parents Teachers Association of Nigeria has advised the Federal Government to convey a tripartite meeting of parents, the Academic Staff Union of Universities, and government so as to resolve the ongoing strike by the university teachers.
This was against the backdrop of the request from the Federal Government that parents’ associations should appeal to ASUU to call off its strike, while the government insisted that it did not have funds to meet the union’s demands.
Speaking in an interview with The PUNCH on Sunday, NAPTAN President, Mr. Haruna Danjuma, explained that it was improper to ask the association to beg ASUU, adding that the government should meet ASUU’s demands.
He said, “If the government is saying parents should meet with ASUU, over what? ASUU didn’t direct their requests to PTA; they directed their demands to the government, their employer. FG has been meeting with ASUU they know what ASUU wants; we also know what ASUU wants through what we read.
“Let the government look into the demands, it is then the parents can say ‘ASUU, please consider the FG.’ I don’t think it is right for NAPTAN to meet with ASUU just like that.
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“We have been begging ASUU, we are not begging them again. But If the government says ‘PTA, NAPTAN, ASUU come,’ then we are ready. The government should organize a meeting with the parent bodies of public and private schools, and basic and higher institutions, and let government arrange for a tripartite meeting. We will go there and say something; after all, they are our children. If it requires us to kneel down and beg the government and ASUU to arrive at something, we are ready to do that and I appeal to the government and ASUU to arrive at something.”
Report on UTAS
Meanwhile, ASUU has disclosed that the test conducted by the National Information Technology Development Agency on the University Transparency Accountability System was concluded three weeks ago.
The PUNCH reports that one of the reasons ASUU embarked on strike on February 14, 2022, was the government’s failure to accept UTAS as the payment platform for the payment of salaries and allowances of university lecturers instead of the Integrated Payroll and Personnel Information System.
In 2020, the union embarked on a strike over some other demands and allegations against what it tagged as “massive fraud and inconsistencies” on the IPPIS.
The union and the Federal Government agreed on the development of a new payment platform.
Early in 2022, a test was conducted by NITDA on the UTAS with the agency claiming that the platform failed the integrity test.
However, the Federal Government through the Minister of Education, Adamu Adamu, ordered that the platform should again be subjected to another test.
Speaking in an interview with The PUNCH, the National President of ASUU, Prof Emmanuel Osodeke, said, “The testing ended three weeks ago, we have not seen the results. The tests have been concluded in three weeks.
“Meanwhile this is for our children, our youths staying at home. Meanwhile, a minister will come and say we are asking for N1.2 trillion. Have the issues that do not have to do with money been resolved? Three weeks now, we have not seen the results.”
When contacted, NITDA’s Director of Communications and Corporate Affairs, Hadiza Umar, confirmed to The PUNCH that the agency has completed the test on UTAS.
She said, “We have completed the testing and the report of the testing has been sent to the Ministry of Labour. I do not know the content of the report but the testing has been concluded.
“The labor ministry sent it to us for testing and that is why the report was transmitted to them. You may however wish to contact the labor ministry for further information”.
When contacted, the spokesperson of the Ministry of Labour and Employment, Olajide Oshundun, simply said, “Absolutely, I do not know anything about it. I am not aware of it and in all honesty, that is the truth.”