Members of the Academic Staff Union of Universities in Ekiti, Osun and Ondo states on Wednesday staged a peaceful protest against the pro rata salary they received in October and the Federal Government’s no work and no pay policy.
The union embarked on a strike action on Monday, February 14, 2022 to protest the non-implementation of the 2009 Memorandum of Understanding with it by the Federal Government, among others.
However, after the strike was called off, the government only paid them by mid-October.
The President of the Academic Staff Union of Universities, Ekiti State University, Ado Ekiti Chapter, Dr. Kayode Arogundade, has accused the President of the Academic Staff Union of Universities, Chris Ngige of negative nursing agenda in Ado Ekiti Chapter.
Arogundade said: “We are expressing our displeasure with the draconian no-work, no-salary decision by the Federal Government introduced by Ngige and sanctioned by the FG. Our interest is that we are not casual workers; nobody is paying us salaries; what we are getting are salaries ».
According to him, it is criminal for anyone to think of not working, even going as far as paying half wages, because people decide to agitate for their rights and demands.
He said: “They do not want the Nigerian education system to flourish. Today the education system is suffering at the hands of our leaders. Foreign universities are now feeding us fat. You can imagine how many years parents seek to protect their residences in foreign universities.
“We are calling on all Nigerians to talk to the Federal Government and tell them that they should not wait for us to start another round of action. We are getting used to it; you have not paid us for eight months this year; we are not dead; we are still alive, so the government has not pushed us. to a state of necessity, where we become so determined that we don’t care what happens.”
Leading the protest at Obafemi Awolowo University, Ife, Osun State, the newly elected branch president, Prof. Anthony Odiwe, said Labor Minister Ngige should not take the matter personally.
According to Odiwe, the union would reassess the situation following the protests by its branches before deciding on its next course of action.
He said: “We are not trouble makers; we are a union of intellectuals. The latest insult to our union is paying our members proportional wages. For us, it’s a distraction. We have been on strike for eight months, and these issues are still there. The government has not addressed them, and those that have been addressed have not been fully addressed.
“The government must do what is necessary; we are not temporary workers, and they should not make us one.’
ASUU members of the Federal University of Technology, Ondo State, Akure slammed the FG for criminalizing academics.
The President of FUTA ASUU, Prof. Yinka Awopetu, said the protest was to condemn the action of the federal government over non-payment of salary arrears.
“We didn’t strike because we wanted to, but because the government didn’t do it; we can’t punish you for that.
“The way forward is for the Federal Government to do what is necessary and pay our money,” he added.