No less than three committees have been set up in two years to investigate the ongoing crisis in the higher education system.
The period under investigation is between 2021 and 2022.
The Academic Staff Union of Universities, the umbrella body of academic staff in Nigerian universities, has always been at loggerheads with the Federal Government.
The union is currently on strike because, according to them, the government has not met some outstanding demands.
The demands include the release of the revitalisation fund for universities, the release of earned allowances for university lecturers, the introduction of the transparency system for the payment of salaries and allowances of university lecturers, an end to the sprawl of universities by the government and the renegotiation of the 2009 ASUU-FGN agreement, among others.
ASUU went on a nine-month strike, which was called off in December 2020 and led to the setting up of a Federal Government committee headed by Prof Munzali Jubril. In 2021, the Munzali committee worked with ASUU and made recommendations in a draft contract.
ASUU was given a timeline on how to get the government to sign the agreement, but the timeline was not met. This forced ASUU to go on another strike to get the federal government to sign the agreement.
During the height of the strike in March 2022, the Federal Government set up the Nimi Briggs Committee to renegotiate the renegotiated agreement.
ASUU entered into the renegotiation of a renegotiated agreement with the Nimi Briggs Committee set up by the Federal Government. On 16 June 2022, the Nimi Briggs Committee submitted a draft agreement to the government, which was a product of collective bargaining.
However, Minister of Education, Adamu Adamu, at a briefing of Vice Chancellors and other stakeholders in Abuja, stated that the government had discarded the Nimi Briggs Committee due to lack of adequate resources.
On Tuesday, September 6, 2022, the government reconstituted a committee, which Adamu himself will chair.