The Non-Academic Staff Union of Educational and Associated Institutions and Senior Staff Association of Nigerian Universities say they will embark on an indefinite strike if the government fails to meet their demands.
The unions, under the aegis of Joint Action Committee, stated this through its spokesperson, Prince Adeyemi.
Speaking at a news conference on Wednesday in Abuja, Adeyemi said the government still has time to salvage the situation.
The News Agency of Nigeria recalls that members of the unions had embarked on two weeks warning strike that expired midnight of April 10.
The unions’ demands include the inconsistencies in payment with Integrated Payroll and Personnel Information System, non-payment of Earned Allowances and non-payment of arrears of National Minimum Wage and it consequential adjustment.
Others are poor funding of state universities, delay in renegotiation of the 2009 agreements, non-release of white papers of visitation panels and non-payment of retirement benefits to outcome members among others.
JAC had resolved that following the failure of government to invite the leaderships for a meeting, the strike should be extended by another two weeks before an indefinite and total strike is declared.
Adeyemi said the strike was borne out of the non-responsive nature of the government and its officials to matters affecting the members of the NASU and SSANU and by extension the entire university system.
He said: “Arising from the last memorandum and following up on the issues, we have written no less than 10 letters or reminders to the government to no avail, not even an acknowledgement.
“It was at the end of all these reminders with no acknowledgement by the government that we were left with no other resort but to embark on a two weeks warning strike.
“Prior to the strike, due process was duly followed and the notice were issued in line with the extant laws.
“Shamefully and painfully, there was no attempt by the government to intercept or even invite the unions to a meeting.
“As of today, the two weeks’ extension is getting to the middle and with no response in sight from government, we may be left with no resort but to embark on an indefinite and total strike.”
Adeyemi, however gave conditions upon which their industrial action might be suspended.
He insisted that government should jettison the IPPIS for the University Peculiar Personnel and Payroll System developed by the non-academic unions.
He also insisted that the N30 billion Earned Allowances, which is a product of the FGN/NASU and SSANU 2009 Agreements, should be paid immediately.
He said the Memorandum of Understanding had stated that the criteria for disbursement would be according to the computation from each University and Inter-University Centre, in line with what is outstanding for each staff.
Adeyemi said: “Sadly, when the said sum was released, it was evident that rather than adopt the submissions of Universities and Inter-University Centres, the Ministry of Education in releasing N22 billion, adopted a lopsided sharing formula of 75 per cent for ASUU and 25 per cent for other unions.”