Friday, June 18, 2021

Polytechnic lecturers suspend strike

• June 9, 2021

The Academic Staff Union of Polytechnics (ASUP) on Wednesday suspended its nine weeks strike for a period of three months.

ASUP which embarked on the strike on April 6 had requested a nine point demand which the government had failed to meet among which were implementation of new salary scheme, revitalisation of polytechnic across the country, implementation of new national minimum wage and payment of areas to members worth N19 billion.

The National Association of Polytechnics Students (NAPS) had on May 27 barricaded the entrance of the federal ministry of education with placards in protest calling for an end to strike to enable them return back to school.

ASUP National President Anderson Ezeibe said the federal government had an agreement with them in 2017/2018 which they refused to uphold which had led to the strike.

“Our members are owed 10 months arrears of the new minimum wage. The language the government used then was that the funds would be released immediately. And when one says immediately, it should mean immediately. However, two weeks after, nothing has been done.

“The proposals by the government has been tabled before our National Executive Committee and approved. So, if they pay those monies now, we will call off the strike,” Mr Ezeibe said.

The federal government had approved the sum of N15 billion as revitalisation fund and N4 billion for the new minimum wage areas meant for the polytechnic teachers but the money was yet to be released to them as promised hence the strike continued .

In a statement signed by the National Publicity Secretary of ASUP,  Comrade Abdullahi Yalwa, the union station stated: “Following an appraisal of the report indicating the gradual implementation of the items contained in the Memorandum of Action signed between our Union and the federal government, the Union has resolved to suspend its 65 days old industrial action with effect from June 10, 2021.

“The suspension is for a period of three months to enable the government complete the execution of the items contained in the Memorandum of Action signed with the Union since 27th April, 2021.”

“As part of the efforts communicated by the Federal Ministry of Education, certain items have been fulfilled like the reconstitution and inauguration of governing councils and visitation panels in Nigerian Federal Polytechnics while we are led to believe that the release of funds for infrastructure revitalisation and minimum wage arrears is currently being processed.”

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