Minister of Education, Adamu Adamu has said the strike embarked upon by the Academic Staff Union of Universities (ASUU) may end this week.
The minister disclosed this during a briefing with reporters on the proliferation of illegal institutions in the country, at the weekend in Abuja.
The ASUU have been on strike since November 4th, 2018.
Malam Adamu said: “Perhaps by next week I hope the ASUU strike will be over.”
But when contacted, the ASUU President, Biodun Ogunyemi, in a text message, said the union was still consulting on whether to end the strike or not.
According to him, the union wants to take stock of what government has promised.
He said: “All I can say, for now, is that we are still consulting. We need to take stock of government’s promises in terms of aspects that have been fulfilled and what is left.
“The feedback and assessment of our members will guide our response in subsequent engagements with government. We hope the expectations of our membership would be met in the new week.
On whether the universities have accessed the N15.89 billion released by the federal government, he said: “We are cross-checking with the concerned universities. Until we confirm that all the universities have received the money, I cannot confirm.
“And please note that ASUU does not collect money from government, financial releases are made directly to universities. That’s why we need confirmation.” The government has been meeting the university lecturers since the strike began.
However, one major issue that keeps dragging the negotiations back and forth is the revitalization of universities.
At present, the government is yet to release the N1.1 trillion it agreed to release as part of the funds for the revitalization project.
The 2013 MoU stipulated that public universities needed N1.3 trillion for a modest revitalization.
The fund was to be released in tranches of N200billion in 2013, N220billion 2014, N220billion 2015, 220billion in 2016, N220billion in 2017 and N220billion in 2018.
Although the previous government of Goodluck Jonathan released N200 billion in 2013 nothing has been released since then.