The months-long trade union action launched by university lecturers is likely to end with the lecturers deciding to call off their strike by Thursday.
FUTA President Dr. Ranjith Dewasiri said they decided to call off the strike by Thursday following successful discussions with Treasury Secretary P.B. Jayasundare last evening.
He said both parties reached consensus on the salary issues and the Treasury Secretary had pledged to give them written assurances on the matter soon. After receiving the written document, containing the method of the salary increase, the strike would be called off, he said.
At the meeting with Minister Basil Rajapaksa during the weekend, most of the issues of the lecturers except the salary issue were ironed out.
The university lecturers launched their trade union action on July 4 demanding solutions to various issues including the salary issue.
However, FUTA President Nirmal Ranjith Dewasiri earlier said its Executive Committee would discuss the proposals submitted by the government and take a final decision tomorrow
“No final decision has been taken yet and we will end the strike only if we are satisfied with the outcome of the ongoing discussions.”
He said FUTA would not back down until its demands were met though it was willing to compromise on the request for a six per cent increase in government spending on education which was one of FUTA’s primary demands.
Dr. Dewasiri said the government had made it clear it could not increase government spending on education to six per cent of the GDP but said a significant increase in spending was expected by the union.
“We have not changed our stance on this matter and we will continue to fight for such an increase in government spending on education,” he said. (Ranjan Kasturi and Olindhi Jayasundere)