SSANU threatens FG, resolves to shut down universities

SSANU threatens FG, resolves to shut down universities


By AmforGod J. Olisa

Due to the Federal Government’s failure to pay the four months’ withheld salaries of the Senior Staff Association of Nigerian Universities (SSANU), the association has resolved to shut down universities today, Thursday, July 4. This decision was made after the 48th National Executive Council (NEC) meeting held in Benin City, Edo State, where the union threatened to stop providing services to all Nigerian universities until its demands are met.

The communique, signed by SSANU President Comrade Mohammed Ibrahim, was made available to newsmen. The NEC of Labour Unions at the meeting strongly urged the federal government to take necessary action to prevent systemic disruption, accusing the government of giving preferential treatment to one union over others. The Joint Action Committee (JAC), comprising SSANU and the Non-Academic Staff Union of Educational and Associated Institutions (NASU), had issued a two-week ultimatum to the Federal Government to pay its members the four months’ withheld salaries.

According to the communique, out of the four university unions that embarked on a prolonged strike in 2022, the Federal Government had paid the Academic Staff Union of Universities (ASUU), leaving the other three unions unpaid. “While we do not begrudge the payment made to our colleagues, we expected the same gesture to be extended to SSANU and NASU that legally complied with all procedures before embarking on the industrial action.” The communique further stated, “despite all promises and media hype by the Ministers of Education and Labour, including the House of Representatives, to pay these arrears, the government has continued to dribble SSANU, even after the mutual agreement to suspend the one-week warning strike in March this year.”

The NEC deliberated on the matter and unanimously approved a long-drawn comprehensive industrial action after concurrence with the Joint Action Committee meeting of SSANU and NASU scheduled for today, July 4, if the government fails to meet its demand.

Regarding the government’s approved wage award of N35,000, which had been stopped, the unions noted the “gross inability of the wage award to heal the excruciating financial wounds,” further compounding the staff’s pains. They claimed, “many states are yet to effect payment of the wage award to our members in state universities, thereby increasing their economic woes.”

The NEC, therefore, called on the Federal Government to immediately resume the payment of the wage award alongside the accrued three months’ arrears without further delay.

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