Withheld Dues: NLC Says FG Rejected ASUU Report

In Breaking News, Education, National News

The Nigeria Labour Congress duly informed the Minister of Labour and Employment, Chris Ngige, of the decision of the Ministry’s Office of the Registrar of Trade Unions to reject the four years audited reports of the Academic Staff Union of Universities, Deborah Tolu-Kolawole of The Punch Newspaper reports.

The Punch Newspaper reports that ASUU had accused the Federal Government of withholding the November 2022 check-off dues of the union despite initial deductions from the source.

Confirming the development, the spokesperson of the Ministry of Labour and Employment, Olajide Oshundun, told The Punch Newspaper that the dues were withheld because of the failure of ASUU to submit the reports.

ASUU had insisted that the report was presented to the government.

To prove its claim, a member of the union’s National Executive Council, on Wednesday made a letter written by NLC available to our correspondent.

In the letter dated September 22, 2022, and addressed to Ngige, NLC noted that efforts by ASUU to submit the reports were truncated by the officials in the Ministry.

“We are greatly alarmed that the timely submission of the annual financial reports and audited accounts by ASUU in accordance with the directives of the Registrar of Trade Unions was rejected by the staff members at the Office of the Registrar of Trade Unions. The staff members disclosed that they were under strict instructions not to accept ASUU’s annual financial reports and audited accounts.

“Later efforts to send the requested union’s financial documents by courier services were equally rejected by the Office of the Registrar of Trade Unions.”

The NLC, in the letter, claimed that the short notice given to ASUU to submit its reports at a time there were threats by the Registrar of Trade Unions to withdraw the union’s certificate of registration and the refusal to accept the same documents upon submission suggested: “a very sinister agenda which is capable of destroying the current general harmony in industrial relations in Nigeria.”

When our correspondent reached out to the spokesperson of the Ministry, Oshundun, over the content of the letter by the NLC, he said he would investigate and get back to our correspondent.

He has not done so as of the time of filing this report.

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