By Emma Una – Calabar
Senior Staff Association of Nigerian Universities, SSANU, and the Non-Academic Staff of Nigerian Universities, NASU, in the University of Calabar on Tuesday held joint a protest to reject the proposed sharing formula of thirty billion given to the universities by the Federal Government.
The protest which was under the aegis of Joint Action Congress, JAC, of the union saw the workers marching round the University’s Main Campus with placards with various inscription baring their anger on the Federal Government on what they termed ‘cheating’ of non-academic staff of universities.
Addressing the workers, the Deputy National President of SSANU, Dr Leku Andor, said the Federal Government was being insincere in implementing simple Agreement signed with non-academic staff unions.
“We entered into a Memorandum of Understanding, MOU, with the Federal Government which was represented by Minister of State For Education, Secretary, National Universities Commission, NUC, and the Accountant General of the federation and they told us that the thirty billion being released is for Earned Allowances for all university workers but today we are shocked to hear of 75% for academic staff and 25% for Nonacademic staff and that arrangement is totally unacceptable to us”.
Dr Andor said the non-academic staff had earlier sent a memo to the Federal Government demanding for one hundred and twenty billion naira for its members and the government informed them that there was a forensic audit of university staff in place to ascertain what each staff would get from the money to be disbursed but nothing has come out of the audit till date
“They assured us that the money was meant for all the four unions in Nigerian universities but today government is adopting a divide and rule approach but nobody can divide us that is the reason we have gathered here to carry out this protest”
He stated that the Integrated and Personnel Information System, IPPIS, which was embraced by nonacademic staff has shortchanged them severely and the workers are now rejecting it.
“The IPPIS which non-academic staff embraced with assurances from government gave has today become a source of pain to us Today, our staff are being paid amputated salaries, half-payments and all sorts of things are going on so we say no more IPPIS. We have tried IPPIS and we have found out it is not marriage material”
Comrade Joseph Omini, the branch Chairman of SSANU said the protest will go on for three days continuously and thereafter, a decision will be taken to embark on industrial action if the government does not respond.
“We are protesting over the non-renegotiation of 2009, MOU, the non-payment of gratuity to retirees who are our members, taking over of nonacademic staff job by academic staff and if nothing is done we shall embark on full strike soon”.