By Shola Abayomi.
The Minister of Education, Adamu Adamu has revealed the federal government’s approval of an additional N25 billion for the Academic Staff Union of Universities (ASUU) as Earned Academic Allowances.
Speaking in Abuja yesterday at his valedictory press conference, Adamu said the money was aside the N20 billion that was released in 2018 to public universities, of which all universities in the country got their due.
“Let me inform you that the federal government has just approved an additional N25 billion to be shared to beneficiary institutions directly. Last year, the federal government released N20 billion directly to universities. As I speak, all universities have got their share of the N20 billion,” he said.
Hinting on the lingering negotiations with ASUU, the minister said the Buhari administration inherited an ‘unimplementable agreement’ of N1.3 trillion when it assumed office in 2015.
“The sad news is that the N200 billion that was released to the Central Bank of Nigeria since 2013 for the universities has not been fully accessed. In specific terms, all the 73 public varsities have accessed the 1st tranche of 50 per cent of the N200 billion.
“For the second tranche of 40 per cent, only 56 institutions have been able to access their funds. The last 10 per cent, representing the third tranche of the N200 billion has not been accessed at all.”
ASUU President Abiodun Ogunyemi had earlier stated in February, that in addition to the N20 billion disbursed to universities last year, the additional sum of N25 billion would be released in April/May 2019, after which government would resume full implementation of the MoU of 2013.
Recall that the Academic Staff Union of Universities (ASUU) embarked on strike late last year in protest of trivial funding of public universities and the unimplimented agreement between the union and the federal government.