Written by Chuks NZEH

Polytechnic Union commences strike today, want Commission as regulators

v id="m_5012084347977422964yMail_cursorElementTracker_1617706920738">The Academic Staff Union of Polytechnics, ASUP has confirmed the withdrawal of services of its members from academic Institutions in Nigeria, adding  that it has commenced an indefinite strike Action from Today 6. April 2021, to draw the attention of government to the plights of the polytechnics in the country, ranging from decayed infrastructures to non payment salaries from 5 to 24 months in some states.

 

This was made known by the National President of ASUP, Comrade Anderson Ezeibe, in a Press Conference which held Tuesday 6 April, 2021, at the National Headquarters of ASUP in Abuja, where they urged the Federal Government to pay more attention to Polytechnics to improve independence of more citizens.

 

Ezeibe noted that, "You may recall that following our Union’s resolve to embark on a strike action effective 6th April, 2021 at the 99th meeting of our Union’s National Executive Council meeting held in Katsina a forthnight ago, we updated the Nigerian public through various media outlets of the unfortunate neglect of the technological education subsector by governments in Nigeria.

We were clear in pointing at:

 

 

"The sorry state of public Polytechnics, Monotechnics as well as the entire subsector, the failure of the government to respond appropriately to the series of letters written on the subject, the expiration of the Union’s ultimatum issued since March 2020 as well as the development of new issues of concern in the sector due to the negligence of the government.

 

 

"Today therefore marks Day 1 of the execution of the resolutions of our Union as already, academic activities have been shut down in ALL PROGRAMS run in Polytechnics and like institutions across the nation effective 00.00 hrs of 6th April, 2021.

For the avoidance of doubt, the following demands were communicated to the government through the Ministries of Education; as well as Labour and Employment and indeed other ministries where our members offer services through various monotechnics. The governors of the states where our members operate were also notified as appropriate.

 

 

"The non-implementation of NEEDS Assessment report of 2014 in the sector nor release of any revitalization fund to the sector despite assurances since 2017.

 

"The non-reconstitution of governing councils in Federal Polytechnics and many state owned institutions leading to the disruption of governance and administrative processes in the institutions since May, 2020."This has also undermined the renegotiation of the Union’s 2010 agreement with the government as such was unilaterally suspended by the government for over 2 years now. Our union has continued to demand for the deployment of developed capacity from the sector over the years in this process and need to reconstitute the councils in line with the Amendments in the Polytechnics Act.

 

"The non-release of the 10 months arrears of minimum wage owed our members in Federal Polytechnics and non-implementation of same in several state owned institutions. This is despite the presidential directive for the payment of these arrears since December 2019.

" Nonpayment of salaries in some state owned institutions as our members are owed their legitimate emoluments ranging from 5 to 24 months in Abia, Ogun, Osun, Edo, Benue, Plateau etc.

 

"Continued victimization of officials of our Union as seen in Institute of Management and Technology, Enugu, Federal Polytechnic Mubi as well as Rufus Giwa Polytechnic Owo. This situation has degenerated to the clamping down and brazen illegal seizure of the properties of our Union by the Rector of Federal Polytechnic Nassarawa.

 

 

"Non establishment of a commission for the sector to bridge gaps in regulatory activities, as well as match the expansion of the sector while positioning the institutions towards fulfillment of their mandate to the country.

 

"Non implementation of the approved 65 years retirement age in the sector by some state governments notably Kano as well as the continued appointment of unqualified persons as Rectors of Polytechnics in some states." He noted.

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