The House of Representatives is making arrangements for a N170 billion fund for the Academic Staff Union of Universities (ASUU) in the 2023 budget.
According to Channel Television, the speaker of the House, Femi Gbajabiamila, disclosed this in a statement on Monday, saying the move will provide a level of increment in the welfare package of university lecturers.
According to him, efforts were ongoing to find lasting solutions to all the issues raised by ASUU. He stated that the budget included an additional N300 billion revitalization fund to improve the infrastructure and operations of the federal universities.
“We are currently working on the 2023 Appropriations Bill, which includes the sum of one hundred and seventy billion naira (N170,000,000,000.00) to provide a level of increment in the welfare package of university lecturers,” the statement read.
“The Bill also includes an additional three hundred billion naira (N300,000,000,000.00) in revitalization funds to improve the infrastructure and operations of federal universities.”
The Speaker explained that President Muhammadu is interested in looking into the latest issues and concerns raised by the varsity teachers.
The ‘no work no pay’ policy embarked on by the Federal Government during the period of strike, Gbajabiamila said, is premised on the law.
He said the decision is based on the government’s legitimate interest in preventing moral hazard and discouraging disruptive industrial actions.
“Nonetheless, interventions have been made to explore the possibility of partial payments to the lecturers. We look forward to a favourable consideration by His Excellency, President Muhammadu Buhari, GCFR who has manifested his desire to what is prudent and necessary to resolve all outstanding issues.
“Implementing meaningful change takes time, especially when appropriations and modifications to systems such as IPPIS are required.
“Therefore, I urge all parties to be patient and grant each other the presumption of goodwill to the extent necessary to achieve our shared objectives. This is not a time for political brinkmanship.
“There is no more pressing objective than to preclude the possibility of further disruptions to the academic calendar of the universities. We must prevent this possibility by all means, as these disruptions risk the promise and potential of our nation’s youth,” he added.