The newly registered Congress of Nigerian University Academics (CONUA) has urged lecturers, especially those in state-owned universities, to join its rank in order to move the nation’s tertiary education system forward.
The Chairman of CONUA, Ahmadu Bello University (ABU) chapter, Dr Abdullahi Isiaku, made the call on Wednesday while speaking to newsmen at the premises of the Court of Appeal, Abuja.
Isiaku had led a team of CONUA officials to observe proceedings in the appeal filed by the Academic Staff Union of Universities (ASUU), challenging the interlocutory injunction of the National Industrial Court of Nigeria (NICN).
Isiaku, who noted that CONUA members were never part of the strike, said that they were locked out of the system because their sister union embarked on strike and as a result were not being paid salaries due to the understanding that ASUU represented all academic staff.
While appealing to ASUU to obey the order of the NICN and return back to work, the CONUA chairman maintained that they do not subscribe to the method adopted by ASUU in tackling the problems bedeviling the university system in Nigeria, adding that incessant strikes could be counterproductive and detrimental to the development of university education in the country.
“We are monitoring the case in court and we are interested in its outcome. But as you know, we are not members of ASUU and we have not been on strike all this while.
“Our members were working in the universities when suddenly the other union declared strike and then, management closed down universities,” he added.