The Federal Government has commenced the payment of N25 billion earned academic allowances of members of the Academic Staff Union of Universities to universities.

Permanent Secretary, Federal Ministry of Education, Sonny Echono, disclosed this to The Nation in an interview on Monday in Abuja, the nation’s capital.

The permanent secretary said the government has resolved all issues concerning earned academic allowance of members of ASUU.

He blamed the delay in paying the money on lack of trust on the part of the union.

According to Echono, the government initially released N20 billion to the union as part of earned academic allowances of members of ASUU, noting that the union held on until President Muhammadu Buhari approved additional N5 billion to bring the earned academic allowances of the union to N25 billion.

“They fought for an increase in amount and which union should get more, academic or non academic. They said until it is complete they didn’t want to be paid in batch.

“Initially, N20 billion was agreed but at the last minute before they signed, they pushed for 25 billion.

“But N20 billion was released and they were holding on, believing that if they collect the N20 billion government will not bring the N5 billion.

“There was a whole long issue on that but we have got Mr. President to approve the additional N5 billion.

“This has been resolved and payment has commenced.”

ASUU President, Prof. Biodun Ogunyemi, when contacted, said he was collecting feedbacks from its members before he could comment properly on the issue.

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