By Adesina Wahab
Two weeks after the Academic Staff Union of Polytechnics, ASUP, reached an agreement with the government on certain issues that may lead to the suspension of the union’s ongoing strike, the Federal Government is yet to do its own part of the bargain, that is release the sum of N19 billion to offset some arrears.
With the development, the national leadership of the union has said the strike, which started on April 6, this year, is continuing.
Speaking in a chat with our correspodent on Sunday, the National President of ASUP, Comrade Anderson Ezeibe, said calling off the strike rests solely on the government doing the needful .
“When we met with the government team about two weeks ago, it was agreed that some funds would be released immediately to do certain things. Specifically, N15 billion is for the Revitalisation Fund. The sum of N4 billion is for the payment of the arrears of the new minimum wage to our members.
“Our members are owed 10 months arrears of the new minimum wage. The language the government used then was that the funds would be released immediately. And when one says immediately, it should mean immediately. However, two weeks after, nothing has been done.
“The proposals by the government has been tabled before our National Executive Committee and approved. So, if they pay those monies now, we will call off the strike. Well, we don’t know what they may do this new week even though we have two days of holiday in the week.
“One of our demands that is the setting up of Governing Councils for the polytechnics, especially federal ones, has been met. It is our view that our demands are within the limits of what government can do. At least, we have seen their responses to similar demands by some sister unions, ” he said.
Ezeibe noted that the issues at stake should be promptly addressed by the government for the sector to move forward.
Recall that ASUP members went on strike on April 6, this year over some issues the union wants the government to resolve.
Vanguard News Nigeria