As the industrial action by the Non-Academic Staff Union of Universities (NASU) and the Senior Staff Association of Nigeria Universities (SSANU) entered day 117, the unions said government has not met any of their demands.
Speaking with journalists in Abuja, general secretary of NASU, Comrade Peter Adeyemi, said the unions will reject any salary recommendation that would cause further disparity in the university system.
He said there is an existing disparity in the university system which they had always ignored, adding that to further expand that disparity would be an invitation to the greatest level of anarchy and industrial unrest ever witnessed in the university system.
Comrade Adeyemi insisted that the two unions are determined to change the status quo, adding that they remain undaunted and undeterred in the face of their salaries that have been stopped and threats issued to the unions from various quarters.
Adeyemi who spoke on behalf of both unions said the Professor Nimi Briggs Committee which was constituted in March 2022 to renegotiate the 2009 agreement with the four university-based unions was biased and has betrayed the terms for which it was set up.
Adeyemi said NASU and SSANU held two meetings with the Briggs Committee and during both meetings, there were no deliberations on salary increment and allowances.
“Following the inauguration of the committee, the two unions of NASU and SSANU had only two meetings with the committee. After the first meeting, the two unions of NASU and SSANU were compelled to create the impression that the committee appeared not to have had its mandate clearly spelt out by government.
“While the NASU and SSANU teams had presented a Memorandum of Demands that included proposal for salary review along with appropriate salary tables, the committee had pleaded that the two unions should take the issue of review of salaries and allowances last, because they were still interfacing with the relevant government agencies to give them appropriate offers to counter our proposals on salary review.
“It is therefore shocking, to say the least, that while we have not even commenced discussions on salary review and other allowances, we received reports that the committee had gone ahead to submit a report to the federal government recommending a ten percent (10%) increase for Non-Teaching Unions. This we find to be very unfortunate and a betrayal of confidence by the committee. While it may be easy to dismiss this information as mere rumour, our belief is confirmed by the fact that a report was truly submitted to the federal government.”
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