By Rotimi Ojomoyela
ADO-EKITI—ACADEMIC and administrative activities were disrupted, yesterday, at the Ekiti State University, Ado-Ekiti, EKSU, as workers of the institution staged a protest over non-remittance of their 11 months’ deduction to cooperative societies.
The protesters, who converged on the University’s administrative block as early as 8am with placards bearing various inscriptions, moved round the campus, blocked the main gate and prevented entrance to the 37-year-old institution.
The placards read: Enough is Enough, pay our 11 months’ salary, No more half salaries, Our members are dying, Help, Save Our Soul EKSU is killing us, O to ge, pay our outstanding salary.
Addressing journalists, the President of Academic Staff Union of University cooperative society, Prof. Awe Ariyo alleged that deductions to the tune of N1.8 billion was not remitted to the cooperative societies’ account making it difficult for staff to access loans.
Ariyo alleged the management of the institution has no regard for workers’ welfare, saying life has been difficult in the last three years.
He said: “They have turned us to a pauper. And all our colleagues that are not doing the cooperative collect full salary. Is it a sin to be frugal and put something aside to build a house, pay children school fees and buy a car?
“The problem we are having is that they are pretending to the government of paying full salary.
“Government gives them N260 million subventions whereas the wage bill is over N500 million. Instead of giving the true picture of how the wage bill rose to that level but they are pretending as if they are paying full salary.
“The Governing Council decided to have a meeting with us but if the proposal is not acceptable, we would move en masse to the Government House to express our grievances.”
Also speaking, the Secretary of the Senior Staff Association of Nigeria Universities, Mr. Aguda Azeez alleged the institution Governing Council under the chairmanship of Prof. Bamitale Omole has derailed from its responsibility in ensuring effectiveness and efficiency in university’s administration.
He said: “The Omole-led Governing Council has been the most unproductive council we have ever had in this university.
“They have failed to look into the institution’s precarious financial situation but embarked on indiscriminate spending to their end.
“Fayemi should cross-examine activities of the council since they have been inaugurated whether it has been productive or otherwise.”
When contacted for reaction, EKSU’s Public Relations Officer, Bode Olofinmuagun said the Governing Council is in a meeting to find a lasting solution to the issues as at the time of filing the report.