The joint action committee (JAC) of the non-teaching staff unions of universities has given the federal government a two-week ultimatum to reverse its sharing formula for paying allowances.
The JAC covers the Non-Academic Staff Unions of Education and Associated Institutions (NASU), the Senior Staff Association of Nigerian Universities (SSANU), and the National Association of Academic Technologists (NAAT).
The federal government had earlier released N40 billion for the payment of earned allowances of the four university-based unions where ASUU was also allocated 75 per cent and 25 to the other three unions.
The government also recently assured the payment of N22.127 billion as earned allowances for the university staff with the sharing formula.
According to NAN, Peters Adeyemi, NASU general secretary, and Mohammed Ibrahim, SSANU president, were signatories to a letter issued by the JAC of the aforenamed unions on Wednesday, in Abuja.
The letter was addressed to Chris Ngige, the minister of labour and employment, and titled, “Refusal of federal government to honour memorandum of action”.
Adeyemi described the sharing formula as injustice and called on the federal government to reverse the sharing formula immediately in order not to cause an “industrial dispute” in the university system.
“The leadership of the JAC of NASU and SSANU is constrained to write the minister in respect of the total failure of the federal government to positively address all the issues contained in the MOA signed on February 25,” he said.
“The refusal of the Minister of Labour and Employment to finalise action on the subsequent Memorandum of Action reached at the meeting of Aug. 25
“It is regrettable to note that the draft of the MOA reached Aug. 25, which was handed over to JAC leadership for vetting was effectively returned on Aug. 30. Almost two months after the meeting, no action has been taken.”
Strike threat: JAC alleges FG’s lack of sensitivity, gives two-week ultimatum
Adeyemi said other items in the letter beyond earned allowances are minimum wage, consequential adjustment arrears, alleged inconsistencies in the IPPIS software, hazard responsibility allowance to deserving members.
He said, contrary to the content of its February 25 MOA and the decision reached at the subsequent meeting of August 26, the government has agreed to release another tranche of N22.127 billion for earned allowance to the universities and inter-university center staff at the ratio 75-25 percent.
“We are alarmed at this lack of sensitivity on the part of government when not long ago, non-teaching staff protested the sharing formula applied by FG at 75-25 for the disbursement of the last tranche of N40 billion released for payment of earned allowances to both the teaching and non-teaching staff of our universities,” he said.
“To again embark on this provocative and unacceptable sharing formula in the next release will only ignite industrial disquiet in our university system.
“We urge the minister to prevail on the federal government not to allow the present peaceful industrial atmosphere in the universities and inter-university centers in our country to be disrupted.
“We, therefore, request for positive redress of the issues presented above by the FG within the next two weeks, failing which JAC may be forced to ask its members take a position on the need to resume to the suspended strike.”
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