FG owes public Universities over N600B intervention fund – ASUU
By; Bayo Akamo, Ibadan.
The Academic Staff Union of Universities (ASUU) has alerted that Federal Government still owes public universities close to N660billion Needs Assessment Intervention Fund.
The union raised the alarm in Ibadan while speaking through its Zonal Coordinator for Ibadan Zone and Chairman, University of Ibadan ASUU Chapter, Professor Segun Ajiboye while speaking with newsmen.
The union pointed out that the owed money was part of the unpaid intervention fund for the year 2014 amounting to N220billion, 2015 N220billion, and 2016 N220billion which was part of the N1.3trillion intervention FGN/ASUU agreement signed in 2013.
According to the union, it was unfortunate that Federal government in the 2016 budget presented by President Muhammadu Buhari, budgeted N369.6billion for Education which Nigerians are presently referring to as “a drop in the ocean as the money is to cater for all levels of education in the country”.
ASUU also stressed that the President did not speak on any issue relating to how the government will fulfill the agreements it reached with the union, adding that the government is owing academic staff in the public universities more than N200billion arrears of earned allowances for the 2014 and 2015 academic years.
The union however reminded the federal government that the 2009 agreement which was due for a review in 2012 has not been addressed by the federal government despite the fact that the union (ASUU) had written severally to the government on the need to start the renegotiation of the agreement to reflect modern and contemporary realities.
“When you consider the agreed intervention fund in 2013, it was N1.3trillion but has the federal government kept to that promise? They only released N200billion in 2013 after the six months strike and since then nothing has been injected. Unfortunately, it is the same government agents that will be saying Nigerian universities are lowly ranked globally without doing the needful to make the universities meet global standard. This involves injecting enough funds into the tertiary education system. If the funds are released, our universities will be able to compete when the necessary infrastructure is in place,” it said.