NASU Threatens Strike Over Unpaid Salaries

THREE months into the shutting of academic work in the nation’s universities, the non-academic staff of the Universities on Tuesday said they would embark on their strike action next week except the government pay the two months’ salary being own them before then.

General Secretary, Non-Academic Staff Union of Educational and Associated Institutions, Mr. Peters Adeyemi, told journalists in Ilorin, Kwara State, that members of the union were being forced into embarking on a strike action by the refusal of the Federal Government to pay their salaries for August and September.

The NASU scribe said, “NASU will start its own strike next week because we have been working and government has refused to pay our salaries. For us, it does not make sense to continue to keep the system running when we are not paid our salary. The reason for this is not known to us.

“Workers in all federal Universities are not paid their salary right now and that is big challenge. Government has not paid our salary for August and as we are talking now, today is September 24, they are effectively owing us two months’ salary and there’s no way we can continue to do this work with empty stomach, while they go about running around the globe with heavy stomach.”

Adeyemi, who spoke during NASU’s National Executive Council meeting on Tuesday, said the union had displayed maturity in handling its grievances but that the government was pushing the members to the wall.

He said NASU had shied away from joining the three-month-old strike by the Academic Staff Union of Universities, though the non-academic staff had been having their own grouse with the Federal Government.

Adeyemi said the government had not explained to them why their August and September salaries were yet to be paid.

He said that the union had been reluctant on embarking on strike since many Nigerians felt uncomfortable with the incessant strikes in the nation’s tertiary Institutions.

He, however, said that members of the union could not continue to work while being inflicted with hunger by the non-payment of their salaries.

Adeyemi said, “We we think as Nigerians and parents, we don’t have to unnecessarily ground the system. But if you take this our maturity and level-headedness to mean stupidity, then of course, we are running out of patience.

“Nigerians would have known that we deliberately did not want this continuous disruption of academic activities because, of course, Nigerians are complaining that those of us in the academic world have continuously ruined the future of students by going on to many strikes imposed on us by the government.

“That is one of the reasons why this time around we did not want to necessarily go on strike, but government is pushing us to that point and Nigerians will have no reason not to understand our position if we start the strike by next week.”

VNTI NASU

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