JAC commences indifinite strike


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From Gideon Arinze and Odigbo Chidinma, Enugu

The Joint Action Committee of Non Teaching Staff in the Universities have commenced an indefinite strike following the inability of the Federal Government to fully implement its agreement with the union

JAC is made up of the National Association of Academic Technology, (NAAT), Non-Academic Staff Union of Education and Associated Institutions, (NASU), and the Senior Staff Association of Nigerian Universities(SSANU).

Addressing members of the Union on Monday, the Chairman of NASU, University of Nigeria Enugu Campus, Comr. Kalu Agwu said that the staff unions are embarking on an indefinite strike due to the failure of the Federal Government to implement the memorandum of understanding it reached with the unions in January this year following a five-day warning strike.

According to Agwu, the Federal Government reached a compromise In 2009 that its negotiations with the unions will be reviewed every three years but since then, it has not shown any seriousness in terms of implementing its promises.

“Many universities have been paying percentage salaries which is not what it should be”. “We are talking about inadequate funding and when this is added to shortage of salaries, it affects the livelihood of Nigerian workers especially members of our unions” he said.

He also said that the Federal Government has failed to implement the judgment of the industrial court that university staff school teachers be integrated into the mainstream of the University system adding that most Universities are teaching without using modern technological facilities which makes it difficult for our students to compete favorably with the outside world.

He regretted that the federal government has failed to register the National Universities Pension management company which according to him was introduced to addressing the shortcomings associated with the National Pensions Commission.

Some of the demands of the union are : Implementation of Contiss 15 for technologists, improvement in teaching and learning facilities in the universities, addressing the issue of corruption in the university system, seriousness in the renegotiation of the 2009 agreements between the Federal government and the Unions.

Other demands by the unions are: Payment of earned allowances of staff, a review of the governing system in the universities, improved funding in line with UNESCO recommendations, full headship of non-teaching units by non-teaching staff employed to man those units, the implementation of the National Industrial Court judgment on Universities’ staff schools and provision of infrastructure in the Universities and payment of salary shortfalls of members.

It would be recalled that the unions had embarked on a five-day warning strike in January after which the Federal Government promised to look into their demands.

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