After hours of deliberation on Friday, the federal authorities lastly retired 10 months of mulishness with the Educational Employees Union of Universities (ASUU) by making a number of concessions to the physique, particularly by reportedly exempting its members from its controversial Built-in Payroll and Personnel Info System (IPPIS). The federal authorities additionally agreed to extend sure funding in addition to pay up wage arrears accrued through the faceoff with ASUU. Regardless of virtually 20 years of appearing out the identical script, the incumbent federal authorities, as with its predecessors, has not learnt easy methods to relate with ASUU. Sadly, this lack of ability to be taught is among the few delicate areas the place the governments of Nigeria have displayed adroitness.
Whereas lecturers and college students had been compelled to sit down at house because of the well being disaster that troubled the globe, the federal government gratefully ignored the elephant within the room with ASUU. Even after the lockdown was eased in phases, the federal government nonetheless acted aloof to the mournful din of scholars, lecturers and the whole public alike. Conjuring a most disrespectful look of unbridled cheek, the federal government chirped that the members of the union may as effectively pursue agriculture as a profession path and be executed with their woes altogether. It will not, the federal government insisted, budge on the IPPIS. In the meantime, lecturers went hungry as they didn’t obtain salaries.
Confronted with the EndSARS protests a fortnight later, the federal government scuttled to the dialogue desk and ASUU made the many of the alternative to bend the federal government to accede to a great a part of their calls for together with what would be the adoption of their very own cost system, College Transparency Accountability Answer (UTAS). The end result was the eventual concessions the federal government made on Friday following lengthy hours of deliberation.
The federal government might retreat to lick its wounds, however the wounds will likely be solely minimal and never private. For ASUU, which was actually left with no selection within the face of the federal government’s offensive discourtesy besides embarking on the 10-month lengthy industrial motion, there will likely be many wounds. Virtually a yr of being compelled to sit down at house jobless may have taken its psychological toll. Victory, nevertheless, is victory. The physique will meet quickly and it’s anticipated that it’s going to name off the strike. Additionally it is anticipated that the lecturers will mend the cracks which broke out of their ranks because of the IPPIS/UTAS disagreement. Their college students might have aged by virtually a yr and the workload will likely be immense once they return to the lecture halls, however they’ll smile to themselves and say softly, “no ache, no achieve”.