ASUU dismisses resumption rumour...

Striking university teachers on Tuesday dismissed as a "rumour" the report that they would soon return to the classrooms.

They insisted that there was no end to the strike until the Federal Government honoured fully an agreement it signed with their umbrella body, the Academic Staff Union of Universities in 2009.

Members of ASUU in Nsukka, Calabar and Benin zones restated their resolve to continue with the industrial action at different briefings on Tuesday.

The Calabar zone of the union, comprising the University of Calabar; the University of Uyo; the Michael Okpara University of Agriculture, and the Cross River University of Technology, particularly described as unfortunate the report that lecturers would return to the classrooms on Thursday.

The Coordinator of the union in Nsukka zone, Dr. Chidi Osuagwu, said the resumption rumour was an embarrassment to ASUU members.

He appealed to the students, parents and guardians to bear with the union, saying they were pursuing a worthy cause to ensure better university system in the country.

He recalled that the union embarked on the strike because of the failure of the Federal Government to implement the 2009 agreement.

The zone draws its members from the Abia State University, Uturu; the Anambra State University, Uli; the Ebonyi State University, Abakaliki; the Enugu State University of Science and Technology, Enugu; Nnamdi Azikiwe University, Awka, and the University of Nigeria, Nsukka.

Members of the union in Benin, in a statement by Dr. Sunny Ighalo (University of Benin), Dr. Emmanuel Mordi (Delta State University); Prof. Fred Esumeh (Ambrose Alli University); Dr. Beke Sese (Niger Delta University); and the zonal coordinator, Dr. Sunny Ighalo, also described the Thursday resumption date as untrue.

The statement read, "There is no iota of truth in the report as the government has yet to make any concrete effort to address the issues at stake. The union remains focused and is resolved to carrying on with the struggle to revitalise and reposition university education in Nigeria. Nothing short of full implementation of the agreement and respect for the Memorandum of Understanding of 2009 will be acceptable to the union."