Published February 10, 2019
The Academic Staff Union of Polytechnics may suspend its strike this week following an agreement reached with the Federal Government and to allow its members to participate fully in the general elections starting on Saturday , February 16 .
Our correspondent gathered that the agreement reached with the Federal Government had prompted the lecturers to consider a conditional suspension of the strike action .
Three lecturers, who spoke with SUNDAY PUNCH on condition of anonymity , said the strike would likely be suspended before the polls.
The National Vice President of ASUP , Mr Timothy Ogunseye , when contacted on Friday by SUNDAY PUNCH, was , however , not categorical on the issue of suspending the strike , stating that the National Executive Council of the union would meet on Monday ( tomorrow) .
Ogunseye said , “We met with the Federal Government last week and we reached some agreements . But you know that we cannot just call the NEC of the union without presenting documents and commitments of the government . But the Federal Government has assured us that some of those commitments will come in the form of written documents very soon.
“ I am not sure if all of them have rolled in but some of them must have been received at our secretariat . By God’ s grace , we are meeting ( NEC) on Monday . The NEC meeting is most likely to hold on Monday .
“ We are very confident that when we meet, we will put everything in perspective . I don’ t want to preempt NEC on the suspension of the strike but we are committed to the national discourse and issues of elections are germane. We cannot afford to fail the nation based on the level of patriotism expected from us even when the government is not doing its own part .
“ We have reached some agreements with the Federal Government but you cannot trust the government . If you look at ASUU , they announced conditional suspension of their strike because nobody trusts the Federal Government in terms of commitment to agreements .”
ASUP declared an indefinite strike on December 12 , 2019 and Ogunseye explained that lecturers did not embark on the strike for pecuniary reasons but to force the government to address infrastructural decay in the nation ’s polytechnics as well as lack of instructional materials .
He stated that lecturers were always reluctant to resort to strike , but stated that government would not do what was expected of it unless the strike option was deployed .