The federal government has scheduled another talk with members of the non-teaching staff of universities.
The meeting is to try and resolve the raging dispute between unions in the university system, the Senior Staff Association of Nigerian Universities (SSANU), Non-Academic Staff Union of Universities and Allied Institutions (NASU) and the Academic Staff Union of Universities (ASUU) over the sharing formula for the N40 billion Earned Allowances recently approved by the federal government.
SSANU and NASU members are currently on strike to compel the government to address their demands.
A notice of today’s meeting signed by the Deputy Director, Press, Ministry of Labour and Employment, Mr. Charles Akpan, said the
Minister of Labour and Employment, Dr. Chris Ngige would host a conciliation meeting between the representatives of the federal government and the Joint Action Committee of NASU/SSANU.
Both ASUU and the other unions are currently embroiled in a tussle over who gets more allocation of the earned allowance.
While NASU and SSANU has accused the Federal Ministry of Education and the Office of the Accountant General of the Federation of unduly favouring ASUU in the disbursement of the fund, the leadership of the academic staff union countered that non-teaching staff were seeking to reap where they did not sow.
A joint action committee of SSANU and NASU listed some their grievances to include alleged discriminatory disbursement of the N40 billion earned allowances, inconsistencies in the implementation of the Integrated Payroll and Personnel Information System (IPPIS), non-payment of arrears of national minimum wage, delay in the renegotiation of FG/NASU and SSANU 2009 agreement and non-payment of retirement benefits of outgone members.
Other issues in contention are the alleged usurpation of the headship of non-teaching units by the teaching staff in clear violation of condition of service and establishment procedures, neglect and poor funding of state universities and non-constitution of visitation panels for universities.
On its part, ASUU had said the N40 billion was meant to settle arrears of earned academic allowances due to its members.
The President of ASUU, Prof. Biodun Ogunyemi, said the N40 billion was part of the agreement to end its nine-month nationwide industrial action.
At the last reconciliatory meeting between the federal government and the non-teaching staff unions, both sides agreed to set up a joint committee to resolve the dispute.