Barely twenty four hours to the expiration of the  December 4 ultimatum Federal Government gave members of the Academic Staff Union of Universities (ASUU) to resume classes or be sacked, the federal government this morning bowed to one of the demands of the lecturers by paying N200 billion into an account opened with the Central Bank of Nigeria, CBN.
Disclosing this on Channels Television programme ?Sunrise Daily? this morning, Dr. Doyin Okupe, Senior Special Assistant to the President on Public Affairs confirmed that the N200b demanded by ASUU to be paid into an account with the CBN has been done. The amount is meant for renewal of infrastructure facilities in public universities in the country.
But ASUU President, Dr. Nasir Fage Isa, accused the government of being insincere in its dealing with the striking lecturers. He urged the government to respond to its letter demanding the fulfillment of some conditions for it to call off the strike.
Okupe said that from the government?s perspective, everything that  needs to be done has been done and whether the strike would be called off or not now lies in the hands of the leadership of ASUU. He said that most of the demands of the Academic Staff Union of Nigerian Universities, ASUU, have been agreed upon at the 13-hour
meeting they had with the President in October.
?At the end of that meeting, the Government proposed that everything that has been agreed should be put in a memorandum of agreement and that the two parties should sign, but the leadership of ASUU declined
and said instead of that, they would rather have a letter of comfort expressing everything that has been resolved therein, and that will suffice for them.?
According to him, the Government agreed to their request and issued the said letter based on the agreement that the strike would be called off within 7 days. However, this did not happen ?in spite of the fact that the ASUU leadership presented the letter of comfort to its chapters nationwide and a clear majority of them endorsed the resolutions reached and actually were more inclined towards calling off the strike.?
Dr. Okupe stressed that the attitude of the ASUU leadership showed that the seed of discord and evidence of bad faith already existed. ?It is unfortunate that somebody died but notwithstanding, that cannot be a justification for delaying the implementation of an agreement for 21 or more days.


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