Non-teaching staff in the universities have threatened to commence a nationwide strike as from February 5, 2021 over the Federal Government’s handling of the Integrated Personnel and Payroll Information System, sharing formula for the N40bn earned academic allowances and non-payment of arrears of the new minimum wage.
The above information was made known by the Joint Action Committee, the Senior Staff Association of Nigeria Universities and the Non-Academic Staff Union of Educational and Associated Institutions at a press briefing in Abuja on Friday.
The committee had last week embarked on a three- day protest over the government’s failure to honour the Memorandum of Understanding signed with the unions on October 20, 2020.
Meanwhile, the JAC, led by the SSANU National President, Mohammed Ibrahim, and NASU General Secretary, Peters Adeyemi, said other contentious issues that informed the decision to embark on a nationwide industrial action include inconsistencies in the IPPIS payment and the delay in the renegotiation of the FGN/ ASUU/SSANU 2009 agreement.
Others are the non-payment of retirement benefits to former members, non-constitution of visitation panels to universities, poor funding of universities, teaching staff usurping the headship of non-teaching units, among others.
The committee disclosed that only one issue was partially resolved out of the seven issues under contention.
It stated, “Out of the seven issues, only one has been partially resolved while the other six issues have not been attended to by government, three months after the Memorandum of Understanding was signed.”
JAC noted that after the congresses held by its branches on Tuesday, 90 per cent of NASU members were in support of the strike while 10 per cent opposed it.
It added that 83 per cent of SSANU members were in support of embarking on strike, 11 per cent were against the strike and six percent were indifferent.
Ibrahim 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 as follows:
“That members of NASU and SSANU shall embark on an indefinite, comprehensive and total strike with effect from midnight of Friday, February 5, 2021.”
“That two weeks’ notice effective from today, Friday January 22, 2021, is hereby given to government and relevant stakeholders of this development,” the JAC President noted.