The Senior Staff Association of Nigerian Universities (SSANU), the National Association of Academic Technologists (NAAT) and the Non-Academic Staff Union of Universities (NASU) have directed their members and all the non-teaching staff in Nigerian universities across the country to commence a seven-day warning strike on Monday.
The president of SSANU, Comrade Samson Ugwoke, while giving the directive on Thursday said there was no going back on the nationwide strike as no significant efforts had been made by the government to prevent the strike since the three unions gave the strike notice.
He said the three unions were ready for a showdown with the government because it had not taken them seriously on the issue.
“The government is not sincere and serious with us from the onset but now our unions are ready for a showdown with the government to ensure the full implementation of the agreement that is due for renegotiation in less than one year time,” Comrade Ugwoke said in a statement on Thursday.
Meanwhile, the president of the Nigerian Labour Congress (NLC), Comrade Abdulwaheed Omar, has justified the industrial action embarked upon by the Academic Staff Union of Universities (ASUU) and the strike declared by the three other industrial unions slated for Monday.
Comrade Omar, who spoke in Abuja while receiving a delegation of the Canadian Labour Congress (CLC), said ASUU, SSANU, NAAT and NASU had no other choice since the government refused to honour the agreements it entered into with them.
According to him, the strike is a testimony to the fact that Nigerian Government cannot be trusted with agreements.
He expressed the NLC support for the strike and added that government was expected to respect agreements but regretted that in Nigeria, government unilaterally breached agreements freely reached with labour with impunity.
THE Academic Staff Union of Universities (ASUU) has threatened to commence a one-week nationwide strike as from September 26, 2011 to protest the non-implementation of the 2009 agreement between it and the Federal Government.
The ASUU Zonal Coordinator, Bauchi zone, Dr Usman Abubakar, who disclosed this at a press conference in Jos said the union would declare total strike if the Federal Government did not honour the agreements.
He said it was a surprise to the union that up till now the Federal Government had not found it fit to honour the agreement signed with the union more than three years ago.
Dr Abubakar, said one aspect in the agreement, yet to be implemented, was the issue of university funding.
He pointed out that the agreement was that the Federal Government should increase the funding of universities gradually until it reached the 26 per cent agreed.
According to him, other aspects of the agreement yet to be implemented were payment of earned allowances, among which were allowances related to postgraduate training, project supervision, excess workload, teaching practice/field trip allowance, hazard, responsibility and assessment for professional appointments, amongst others.
He condemned the non-implementation of the 70-year retirement age for university teachers.
ASUU expressed sadness that the state of insecurity in Bauchi, Jos and Maiduguri had reached such a level that no Nigerian felt secure in any part of the country.
Other issues, which the union said it disagreed with the Federal Government apart from insecurity, were unemployment, poverty and rising cost of living.
Total compliance, to the one-week nationwide warning strike by Academic Staff Union of Universities, ASUU has been witnessed in basically all universities nationwide as all academic activities have stalled; Examinations in the University of Jos have been paralysed.
In Lagos, academic activities in University of Lagos, and Lagos State University were completely shut down.
In Ibadan, besides the disruption of the on-going second semester examination and its postponement to October 4, Non-Academic Staff Union of Educational and Other Institutions, NASU and their Senior Staff Association of Nigerian Universities, SSANU, counterpart, have given notice of warning strike from October 3.
Similarly, academic activities in University of Benin and Ambrose Alli University Ekpoma, in Edo State, were grounded.
Also at AAU, ASUU Benin zonal chairman, Dr. Sunday Ighalo, described the strike as “total and comprehensive.”
In Abia State, Abia State University, Uturu, and Michael Okpara University, Umudike, lecture rooms were empty as neither lecturers nor students attended classes.
In a recent interview with the ASUU President; Professor Ukachukwu Amuzie ..He stated that “As far as I know, the warning strike has started. The union has taken a decision and our members will abide. The decision to go on warning strike was taken by the union and not by me.”
He also added that “the warning strike is going on across the universities in the country”.