Culled from Nigeria Tribune

IF this Friday’s meeting with the Secretary to the Government of the Federation, Anyim Pius Anyim, ends in a deadlock, the National ExecutiveCouncil (NEC) of the Senior Staff Association of Nigeria Universities (SSANU) has mandated its leadershipto immediately declare a nationwidestrike in universities across the country.

The union is demanding that the Federal Government pay the Earned Allowance owed its members, set aside the NEEDS Assesement Report on the university education system submitted to the government and address the issues of payroll and personnel information system.

SSANU President, Comrade Samson Ugwoke, disclosed this at the weekend while addressing newsmen at the end of the union’s NEC meeting held at the Ladoke Akintola University of Technology (LAUTECH), Ogbomosho, Oyo State.

He explained that the varsity workers would have no choice but tobe forced into another protracted nationwide strike anytime from now, adding that other sister unions in the universities, namely the National Association of Academic Technology, (NAAT) and the Non Academic Staff of Universities and other allied institution(NASU), operating under the Joint Action Committee (JAC), had also been alerted to go on strike if the meetings fails to resolve the issues.

Ugwoke said the unions had delayedthe strike following the intervention of the House of Representatives, which advised the executive to raise a supplementary budget to cover thepayment of the allowances.

“All the unions at JAC, SSANU, NASU and NAAT were together at a meeting on the invitation of House Committee on Education. The committee invited us and a motion of urgent importance moved by Alhaji Bashir of Ngogo Federal Constituency in Kano on the looming strike in the university sector due to non-payment of Earned Allowance; NEEDS Assessement Report, and the IPC implementation, that is Integrated Payroll and Personnel Information System, which the Federal Government wants to embark on.

“Our meeting with them was very robust, interesting and successful. At the end, and as regards the NEEDS Assessement, IPC and Earned Allowance, the House suggested thatthe executive should raise a Supplementary Budget covering the Earned Allowance.

“To our surprise, the National University Commission (NUC) decidedto write that it will take N157 billion.We said it is not true, IMC did not say it will take N157 billion to pay. How they came about that figure by Chief Babalakin was not clear to us. We were not taken along because when we met last, the position was that the non-teaching staff will go with Babalakin to the House Committee on Education and the Senate Committee on Education and presentthe amount that will cover the four years arrears of Earned Allowance, including the 2013 aspect of the allowances in the 2013 budget.”

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