From Benjamin Babine, Abuja
The Non-Academic Staff Union of Educational and Associated Institutions (NASU), and the Senior Staff Association of Nigerian Universities (SSANU) have disclosed that they will be embarking on “an indefinite, comprehensive and total strike” from February 5th.
The Joint Action Committee of both unions, disclosed this while addressing reporters at a press conference in Abuja on Friday. The committee explained that it is giving the government two weeks to address its demands, else the industrial action will commence on February 5th.
The unions had embarked on a 14-day warning strike between 5th and 19th of October 2020 in protest of a number of issues bordering on the welfare of their members. The warning strike culminated in the signing of a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) on the 20th of October, 2020 between the representatives of the unions and the government.
The committee disclosed that out of the eight demands presented to the government, only one had been implemented. The spokesperson, Comrade Peter Adeyemi said: “the ongoing industrial tensions in the university system stem from the failure of government to respect collective bargaining agreements entered into with the Joint Action Committee of NASU and SSANU.”
“Out of eight of the issues, only one has been partially resolved while the other seven have not been attended to by government, three months after the Memorandum of Understanding was signed,” he said.
“It is in line with the resolution of our members nationwide, that the leadership of the Joint Action Committee of NASU and SSANU hereby resolve that members of NASU and SSANU shall embark on an indefinite, comprehensive and total strike with effect from midnight of Friday, 5th of February. Also, a two weeks notice effective from today, Friday 22nd January 2021, is hereby given to the Government and relevant stakeholders.”
The eight issues for which an MoU was signed are: Inconsistencies in IPPIS payment, non-payment of earned allowances, non-payment of arrears of national minimum wage, delay in renegotiation of FGN/NASU and SSANU 2009 agreement, non-payment of retirement benefits of outgone members.
Other issues complained about were: teaching staff usurping headship of non-teaching units in clear violation of conditions of service and establishment procedures, neglect and poor funding of state universities, and non-constitution of visitation panels for universities.