By Kuni Tyessi
Abuja — The meeting between the federal government and the Academic Staff Union of Universities (ASUU) yesterday again ended with both parties failing to resolve their differences.
With the non-resolution the issues, the four-week-old industrial action embarked upon by the lecturers continues.
The meeting, which started in the evening and lasted for three hours, was aimed at re-opening negotiations over the demands for improved funding and remuneration for universities by the varsity teachers.
The ASUU team which was led by its National President, Prof. Biodun Ogunbiyi, and the federal government delegation led by the Minister of Education, Mallam Adamu Adamu, resolved to continue discussion at a later date.
ASUU president, who initially refused to speak with journalists when accosted for comments, said the discussion was inconclusive, adding it would continue at a later date.
He said: “The meeting will continue at a later date. We will continue from where we stopped. We will continue at a later date.”
Asked whether there was any progress made at the meeting or not, he said: “We have started the discussion; we are continuing and the discussion will continue at a later date. That is what I can say for now.”
When further asked how soon they would reconvene the meeting, he said: “You will get to know about it.”
Desperate attempts made by newsmen to equally speak with the Minister of Education, Adamu, failed.
Meanwhile, the House of Representatives Committee on Tertiary Education, earlier visited the Minister of Education, where it called on the government and ASUU to expeditiously resolve their differences so that the strike can be called off.
A statement signed by the Deputy Director of Press in the Federal Ministry of Education, Bem Goong, and released to the media last night, read thus: “Members of the House of Representatives Committee on Tertiary Education Services rose from a one-day oversight meeting with the Minister of Education, expressing deep concern over the continued strike by ASUU urging the federal government and the union to expeditiously conclude the ongoing negotiations in order to bring back our students to their campuses and classes.
“The committee Chairman, Hon. Aminu Suleiman, said federal government and ASUU must go beyond resolving the current strike to provide lasting solutions that will make strikes in the education sector a thing of the past.
“On his part, Adamu said government is desirous to confine strikes in the education section to the dustbin of history, adding however, that funding remains the greatest obstacle.
“The minister however, said the workshop on sustainable funding for education in Nigeria coming up tomorrow at the Presidential Villa is expected to proffer lasting solutions to the sustainable funding for the sector.”