The Congress of University Academics, CONUA, a rival of the Academic Staff Union of Universities, ASUU, has called on the federal government to recognise it as an academic union in universities in the country.
The union said all necessary requirements needed to see it recognised had been met.
This was disclosed in a chat with Vanguard by the National Coordinator, Dr Niyi Sunmonu, on Sunday.
He said: “Some days ago, the Minister of State for Labour, Mr Festus Keyamo, SAN, said publicly that CONUA has met all requirements for it to be registered as a trade union, but we don’t know what is still delaying that.
‘’There is always the need to look at issues from more than one perspective. Moreover, we operate in an academic environment.
“Look at it this way, when the GSM revolution started in the country, the pioneers said per second billing was impossible but another operator came and started per second billing, every other operator joined and the society has become better for it. We all know that there is freedom of association in the country as enshrined in the constitution.
“In the university, when someone is defending his final project, he faces an audience who would look at his work in different perspectives. That is intended to make things better.
‘’We don’t want to believe that the Academic Staff Union of Universities, ASUU, is behind this reluctance on the part of the government,” he stated.
Sunmonu also denied insinuations that the government wanted to use his group to destabilise ASUU.
He said: “We were members of ASUU before some issues came up in 2016 at Obafemi Awolowo University, Ile Ife, and when justice was not done and majority of members felt it was a deviation from what a union should stand for, CONUA eventually came up in 2018.”