The Nigeria Law Students Association has taken the University Academic Staff Union (ASUU) to the Federal High Court in Abuja, challenging what it has described as the union’s relentless strikes.
The association is seeking an order to force ASUU to return to class as well as a perpetual injunction order to prevent ASUU from launching further strikes.
The lawsuit brought by the association’s president, Mr. Blessing Agbomhere, on behalf of its members, also asks the court to force ASUU to pay compensation of 10 billion naira to Nigerian students.
This, according to the association, is for alleged violation of students ‘right to education guaranteed by article 18 of the 1999 Constitution and article 17 of the African Charter on Human and Peoples’ Rights.
The association is further asking the court to order ASUU to pay damages to all Nigerian students for the psychological and emotional torture inflicted on them as well as the loss of precious time following the strike. keep on going.
Speaking to reporters, Agbomwere said the lawsuit followed his findings that ASUU members failed to change the federal government by teaching at more than one university.
He said investigations also revealed that union members engaged in consultancy services at oil companies and received multiple salaries at the expense of Nigerian students.
Besides the ASUU, the association also joined Professor Biodun Ogunyemi, President of ASUU, the Minister of Education, the Minister of Labor and Employment, the Attorney General of the Federation and the Federal Government in as the 2nd to 6th defendants in the lawsuit.
Among other things, the association is seeking a declaration that the union strike is a violation of the association members’ right to education.
“A statement that the indefinite strike launched by the 1st and 2nd accused since March 2020, leading to the closure of government-owned universities, which has had a negative and negative impact on the learning of the plaintiffs and the smooth functioning of the academic calendar universities, is a brazen violation of the applicant’s right to education.
“A mandatory injunction order obliging the 1st and 2nd defendants to cancel the strike and return to the status quo ante bellum while negotiations for an amicable resolution of the issues in dispute or between the defendants are in progress.
“A perpetual injunction order prohibiting the 1st and 2nd defendants, whether alone, servants, agents and / or soldiers, from declaring or engaging in indefinite and incessant strikes.”
The students are also seeking an order directing the 3rd to 6th defendants to reopen government-owned universities and honor their contractual agreements with the 1st and 2nd defendants in the general interest of the plaintiff.
The students are also asking the court to award the sum of 10 billion naira to the union.
“This will serve as general and exemplary damages for the loss of precious time, opportunity, mental torture, psychological anguish and general deprivation from which the complainant has suffered or is likely to be exposed at the end of his studies.”
However, no date has been set to hear the trial.
ASUU has been on strike since March 2 and union officials have since negotiated with the government.