The Academic Staff Union of Universities (ASUU), Ambrose Alli University (AAU), Ekpoma chapter has kicked against the suspension of its activities by the Governor Godwin Obaseki led Edo state government.
CAMPUS GIST reports that Obaseki had on Wednesday announced the suspension of all union activities in state institutions of higher learning following protest by students of AAU, over the lingering strike by ASUU.
Government had listed the affected unions to include ASUU, Non-Academic Staff of Universities (NASU), Senior Staff Association of Nigerian Universities (SSANU), Academic Staff Union of Polytechnics (ASUP), and the Non-Academic Staff Union of Polytechnics (NASUP).
But ASUU, on Thursday, criticised the move by the Obaseki led Edo state government, including the order for staff to resume work, describing the governor’s action as illegal.
Chairman of the AAU ASUU, Cyril Onogbosele, told The PUNCH that government lacked the power to suspend the union’s activities because the union is not registered with the state government.
He said, “We have seen the statement banning the activities of unions in the state institutions including ASUU. ASUU is a legal trade union and we have the right of association in the eyes of the law.
“So, on what basis did he ban the union’s activities? Is it because students protested because the union is on strike?.”
Onogbosele said the school management was duly notified of its ongoing strike over the non-payment of its members’ 17-month salary arrears.
“So is he (the governor) saying we don’t have the right to ask for our pay with a strike action? What is illegal in the activity that we have carried out? Is strike not recognised by law as a means to put pressure on employers to address issues?
“These are the views of the union and the action is condemnable. If there are issues, you resolve it with the union and you don’t ban the union’s activities because you don’t want to resolve the pending issues,” he added.