The Minister of Labour and Employment, Senator Chris Ngige has approved the registration of two new academic unions.
It further directed the newly registered unions to return to classrooms for teaching services.
Ngige said that the two unions: the Congress of Nigerian University Academics (CONUA) and the Nigerian Association of Medical and Dental Academics (NAMDA)) were reassembled from the Academic Staff Union of Universities (ASUU), due to several letters written to the Ministry of Labour and Employment by former ASUU members, complaining of mistreatment and, declaring their rejection of ASUU’s modus-operandi.
Ngige confirmed that the unions are equal in rights with ASUU and will be invited to all events and negotiations involving university lecturers.
The minister added that there are now three unions in Nigeria’s tertiary education and that ASUU will no longer be the only voice that speaks for Nigerian lecturers.
He disclosed that the unions had applied for registration in 2017 and 2018 respectively.
He also hinted that more unions in the universities would be registered in due course, saying “yes that is what the law says, but there is another proviso that the Minister can register new unions where the existing one no longer serves the purpose it was established.”
Ngige asserted that the registration of the two unions doesn’t negate the existence of ASUU, adding that they will still enjoy their rights.
ASUU has been on strike since February 14, 2022, as lecturers of public universities protest unpaid allowances and demand better welfare package from the Federal Government.