On Sunday there were signs non-teaching university staff pressured their management to declare industrial dispute after the government allegedly failed to meet the April deadline for the implementation of the MoU Memorandum of Action signed with the union.
Union members complain that after about 14 months of corrections the consequences of the new minimum wage have come into effect and the government has not started implementing them.
Comrade Mohammed Haruna Ibrahim, president of the Association of Senior Officials at Universities of Nigeria (SSANU), spoke to reporters over the weekend and reiterated pressure from his members to restart the strike.
According to him, “We met with the government a few months ago and after the three-week strike we were sympathetic. A lot of pressure on us; a lot of persuasions and we talked to the government and saw reasons to end the strike because the government is trying to paint a picture of the sincerity and we have to give us a lot of pressure. they had a chance to do a thing or two to make sure our demands were met.
“As you know, our requirements are not new. This is something that has been going on for eleven years. We had an agreement with the government in 2009 and until now there are still many such problems, especially those that involve a number of payments for our services.
“We saw the reason for stopping because we thought the government was right and the deadline was set by the government, not us, that most of these issues will be resolved by the end of April. We still believe that miracles can happen.
“Apart from the fact that many of our members are passionate, we are under great pressure to return to the trenches because even when we ask our members to interact with them, they are forced to give the government a chance.
“We hope the government doesn’t disappoint us and portrays us as liars to our members. If the government doesn’t stick to the schedule, industrial peace cannot be guaranteed because we have been taken for a ride for too long.
Of the seven issues we raised with the government, three or four were handled. For example a question from the visitor committee: Bodies are currently in all universities. Our salary inconsistency issue is also being examined by the IPPIS committee.
“But payment of the consequential adjustments for the new national minimum wage and the allowances that are encapsulated in our agreements contained in the earned allowance; these are still things that are lagging behind and there is no end in sight, to say the least.
“While the government is trying to solve some of the problems, which affect us directly, which affect our pockets, it has not been dealt with. Uncertainty is causing inflation to rise sharply. Prices of goods have changed. Our members can’t even do the slightest. Take home what you paid for, and when you make some purchases, the money is lost.
“We are pleading with the government to ensure that they don’t embarrass us as elders in our different unions, that all those agreements we have reached with them which they promise that they will see the light of day by the end of April come to see the light of the day but where it doesn’t, out hands are also tied as leaders.
“We never stop strikes, we just suspend it, which means our notice is still in government, but until this Action Note ends we just have to call our people and tell them our government has failed and they will tell us the action. next, we need to do.
“For us at SSANU, we are not affected, we believe in commitment. Even when we went on strike, it took three weeks, and because we believed that things could be done differently, but when we were pushed against the wall, there is no other reason other than reacting.
“As I said, some of the problems we have with the government – all non-monetary aspects are addressed. Obviously we see it, but in terms of giving money to members, their dues to them. The government refuses to pay for work.
“For example, paying subsequent adjustments, implementing EAs in our salaries – these are areas where the government is still lagging and the issue of non-payment of pension. Our retired members cannot access the money they collect on their behalf and are deposited with the PFA. This is a very unfortunate situation.
“These are areas that are still lagging behind by the government and they have promised that we must hand them over by the end of April. During this time, the next adjustment will be paid, EA will be carried out together with our salary, which is paid every month. We still have problems with the government in this area. “”
It has been reliably established that the Minister of Labour and Employment, Senator Ngige, has promised to intervene in the case to ensure that it will not lead to a strike.
His name is Ibrahim Olamide AKA “Masnet”, the creator of IBMASNET.COM. He is a writer, poet, educational consultant, and also reporter who cherishes reporting the latest updates in educational news in Nigeria and Overseas. Also, he is committed to assisting the learners in terms of learning and other aspects.