Workers in federal varsities threaten strike

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Non-teaching staff in federal universities have threatened to down tools if the federal government continues to delay the payment of the new minimum wage.

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The Senior Staff Association of Nigerian Universities, SSANU, expressed dismay that they are yet to be paid the new wage after the Federal Government and the organised labour concluded negotiations on the new minimum wage and the consequential adjustment.

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Its National Public Relations Officer, Comrade Salaam Abdussobur said in the statement that it is unfortunate that while workers in other sectors have started enjoying the new wage, university workers appear to have been forgotten.

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“The Senior Staff Association of Nigerian Universities expresses dismay over the delay in the implementation of the new national minimum wage for its members and workers in the university system. We note that negotiations were quite protracted and spanning over a period of two years. With the conclusion of the negotiations, it was assumed that the implementation would be seamless and require no further agitations to ensure it is actualized across all the sectors of employees.

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“Unfortunately however, months after the agreements were concluded, it seems workers in the university system have been forgotten in the scheme of things. While workers in other sectors have started enjoying the increment in salaries, the university system has not.’’

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The association noted that there has not been any explanation from government on why the payment was delayed.  ‘‘As a consequence, our members are becoming increasingly restive and agitated over the obvious neglect of the university sector in the implementation of the national minimum wage act.”

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The statement noted that ‘‘with the situation of things, it is becoming clearer to us that except an industrial action is undertaken, the new national minimum wage may never be implemented in the university system. We hereby sound a note of warning to ensure the immediate payment of the minimum wage in order to guarantee industrial peace.”

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