Nigeria’s Varsity workers begin nationwide strike on Friday
The Senior Staff Association of Nigeria Universities (SSANU) and the Non-Academic Staff Union (NASU) of the Educational and Associated Institution are launching a nationwide industrial action to force the federal government to address their grievances.
The unions also wrote their branches to join the strike.
Part of the strike notice signed jointly by NASU Secretary General Comrade Adeyemi Peters and SSANU President Mohammed Ibrahim reads: ‘In view of the outcome of the meeting, NASA’s JAC leadership and SSANU at the branches to begin joint general meetings on Friday (today) to report on the outcome of the reconciliation meeting and make decisions on the way forward.
“Meanwhile, the nationwide strike will take effect from 12 midnight, Friday 5 February 2021, pending any conflicting decision by the branches”.
Both unions met last Tuesday with the federal government team led by Labor and Employment Minister Senator Chris Ngige, where it was agreed that a joint committee be set up to look into issues raised by the workers.
Ngige said most of the concerns raised by the unions have been addressed or are in the process of being addressed.
However, Peters told reporters at the end of the meeting that the parties had not reached an agreement, stressing that the unions’ position on the February 5 ultimatum would cease unless the relevant bodies gave the opposite guidelines.
He said the leadership of the two unions had agreed to take back the matters for their input to the members.
The unions listed their grievances, including alleged discriminatory payment of the N40 billion earnings grants, inconsistencies in the implementation of the Integrated Wages and Personnel Information System (IPPIS), non-payment of arrears of national minimum wage, delays in the FG / NASU renegotiation and SSANU 2009 agreement and the non-payment of retirement benefits of past members.
Other issues that are disputed are the use of the guidance of non-teaching units by the teaching staff in violation of the condition of service and institutional procedures, neglect and poor funding of state universities and the non-composition of visiting panels for universities.