SSANU Asks FG To Pay Members Withheld Salaries From Nationwide Strike
…Urges Buhari’s Govt To Settle Outstanding N50bn Earned Allowances
The Senior Staff Association of Nigerian Universities (SSANU) has called on the Federal Government to pay its members their 4-month salaries which were withheld during the nationwide strike.
The body made this known in a communique read by the National President of SSANU, Mohammed Ibrahim, after the regular national executive council meeting of SSANU which was held at the Umaru Musa Yar’adu University, Katsina State.
“It becomes totally amusing and distasteful that government could in spite of the glaring legal compliance by SSANU on this industrial action, still proceeds to withhold salaries of her members,” it said.
The body also urged the FG to fulfill its promise and release the N50bn in earned allowances to the universities.
“NEC in session deliberated on the promise of the government to release the sum of N50bn for payment of outstanding Earned Allowances to University and inter-university centres.
“This promise is now overdue. Government is therefore urged to keep to their word and not go their normal way of reneging on their promises to avoid industrial dispute in the system,” it said.
SSANU also lamented the fact that over 13 federal universities were yet to pay arrears of the new minimum wage to their staff.
The affected universities are the Federal University, Otuoke; Micheal Okpara University of Agriculture, Umudike; Federal University, Dutsima; Abubakar Tafawa Balewa University, Bauchi; Federal University, Gashua, Yobe, and Federal University Kashere.
Regarding the allegations of usurpation of functions of the University Governing Council, SSANU accused the HoSF of directing universities on how, when, and the number of persons to be promoted at any given time.
The body also accused the office of the Head of Service to the Federation of overtaking the responsibilities of its governing councils, stating that the Councils are the highest governing bodies within their institutions and should be allowed to discharge their duties devoid of interference from external parties.
It said, “The ugly emerging trend of federal government’s incursion and seizing of Federal Universities Governing Council powered and functions was re-appraised on the floor of the NEC.
“Statutorily, Council is the highest and final decision-making organ in any university. Some overzealous agents a trying however to truncate this process.
“We now hear of circulars from the Office of the Head of Service of the Federation, directing universities on how, when, and the number of persons that should be promoted at any given time.
“It should be noted that at no time has the Head of Service been part of the promotion of staff of universities. Promotion in the system ends with the Councils of Universities, where a representative of the Federal Ministry of Education is also a member.
“Councils of Universities should be allowed to do their work devoid of interference by the Office of the Head of Service or any external agents for that matter. NEC clearly says no to the usurpation of the powers of Council in relation to the promotion of our members in universities and inter-University Centres, and is poised to take all legal means to ensure that our members are not subjected to obnoxious policies.”