LABOUR has demanded an urgent payment of N8 billion Earned Allowances to the varsity workers; as agreed in the signed agreement with the varsity based unions by the Federal Government in March, this year.
The urgent demand was followed by a threat by the three universities based unions- the National Association of Academic Technologists (NAAT), the Non- Academic Staff Union of Universities and other Tertiary Institutions (NASU) and the Senior Staff Association of Nigerian Universities (SSANU)
NAAT – to resume their nationwide strike suspended after the signing of the agreement on March 8, 2018.
In a communique issued at the end of its National Executive Council (NEC) meeting held at the Ahmadu Bello University, Zaria, Kaduna state, NAAT, warned that the university workers would be forced to begin a strike action as the government has again failed in fulfilling the part of the agreement.
The union warned that members of the three unions were already restive, over the delay. and may resume the suspended strike action at any moment.
According to the communique signed by NAAT President Comrade Sani Suleiman and the General Secretary, Comrade Hamilton Iyoyo, the union stated that the government apparently deceived them; and used the signing of the agreement as a convenient tool to end the strike action.
He, however, warned that that may be temporary, as the government sign the agreement only to renege on its side of the bargain.
The communique reads: “A case in point is the recent MOU which FGN signed with the Joint Action Committee (JAC) Unions of NAAT, NASU and SSANU that led to the suspension of the strike action embarked upon by the unions on 15th March 2018.
“We are well over the five (5) weeks agreed upon in the MOU which was signed on 8/03/2018, and nothing has come out from the government by way of implementation on all the issues. This insensitivity has remained the primary cause of instability in the University System.
“NAAT hereby advises FGN to always honour agreements and ensure effective communication to forestall the cycles of strike action. In particular, Government is hereby urged to release the N8 Billion agreed in the said MOU for payment of Earned Allowances, because the unions are already restive over the delay – and may resume the suspended strike action at any moment.”
The union said the decay in the education sector as evident in the lack of quality graduates from the various levels of educational institutions is due to poor funding by the government.
According to the union, “the deterioration affects several aspects including lack of adequate infrastructure for teaching and learning, such as workshop, laboratory and studio facilities.”
The union stated that this development has contributed largely to the unemployable status of graduates from the various institutions, including universities.
It urged the government to ensure adequate funding of the Education Sector, by mobilizing stakeholders and utilizing all necessary machinery at its disposal.
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