The Academic Staff Union of Polytechnics said it did not suspend its strike totally.
This is as the union insisted that only four of its demands had been met by the Federal Government
Saturday PUNCH had reported that the union had directed its members to resume work on Monday, May 30, 2022 after a two-week warning strike which commenced on May 16, 2022.
Speaking in an interview with our correspondent, the National President, ASUP, Anderson Ezeibe, noted that it was wrong for individuals to claim that the union suspended its strike.
He stated, “It is necessary to clarify this. We did not suspend any strike. We embarked on a two-week warning strike and after the end of the two weeks, we told our members to resume work pending the outcome of the National Executive Council meeting. So, I think it is wrong to say that we suspended the strike totally.
“Out of the nine demands, only four have been met. The commencement of payment of arrears of the new minimum wage in all affected federal polytechnics, isolated cases of underpayment and omissions are being handled at institution levels, as well as the approval and release of regulatory instruments for accreditation of institutions, management and programmes.
“Four regulatory instruments that address issues around accreditation activities which were reviewed in 2021, were approved and released to the public through the NBTE website.
“This issue shall provide a policy framework to address the challenges in state-owned institutions. Already, implementation is on as a decision has been taken on the situation in the Abia State Polytechnic where salaries are owed for 34 months. The proprietor (Abia State Government) has been dully communicated.
“A decision has also been taken on the vexed issue of victimization of union officials at the Institute of Management and Technology, Enugu, where five of our officers were dismissed due to their participation in the 2017 strike of the union.
“The issue of continued infractions of the Federal Polytechnics Act as typified by the release of a contentious template for appointment of principal officers by the Federal Ministry of Education was also handled as the document is due to be withdrawn as agreed.
“So, we still have other issues that have not been addressed.”
According to Ezeibe, the issues yet to be addressed include, “release of the approved N15bn revitalisation fund for the sector. This issue is still stuck in the Federal Ministry of Finance with a promise of follow-up action by the Education ministry.
“Release of arrears of CONTISS 15 migration for the lower cadre; this issue is still at the committee level set up to resolve the dispute on the contested 2014/15 verification report.”