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NLC fumes over FG’s silence on prolonged varsity workers’ strike

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Thursday, April 28th, 2022
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By Johnbosco Agbakwuru

The Nigeria Labour Congress, NLC, expressed expressed anger over the Federal Government’s perpetual silence while public universities remained shut down for over two months.

NLC lamented what it described as gross injustice in the society, where the political class was busy with 2023 electioneering activities and universities shut down indefinitely.

Speaking to journalists before the commencement of the Central Working Committee, CWC, meeting preparatory to the May Day Commemoration, the NLC President, Comrade Ayuba Wabba, decried the alleged injustice meted out on the four university-based unions and by extension, the children of the underprivileged who attend public universities.
He accused the federal government of lip service to issues concerning education at the detriment of the masses.

He said: “We are facing a period of great injustice on the downtrodden of the society, children of the poor are at home but the children of the rich are going to school, we have written several communication to the government but no response till date, rather they are busy discussing politics.”

Recall that the four university-based unions, the Academic Staff Union of Universities, ASUU, the Senior Staff Association of Nigeria Universities, SSANU, the Non-Academic Staff Union of Educational Institutions, NASU and the National Association of Academic Technologists, NAAT, have been on strike as a result of their disagreement with the government.

The issues in contention revolve around revitalization funds for Nigerian universities, shoddy implementation of the Integrated Payroll and Personnel Information System, IPPIS, non review of condition of service among others.

Wabba reminded the CWC members that unionists and workers all over the world have not had it rosy, especially with events that have continued to shape the world, COVID-19, and the Russia-Ukraine crisis.

His said: “I think it’s very clear we have not had it rosy, we just got out of Covid-19 but we have more serious challenges centered around education. As you all know, the children of the poor are at home while those of the rich are going to school. To date, we have communicated through recommendations to the government but no response.

“This is most disheartening because people in our generation benefited from free education from primary to tertiary level. This is not acceptable, instead of the politicians discussing these issues as a national emergency they are occupied with the 2023 elections.

“We at this CWC meeting would be looking at the upcoming political dispensation. A lot of broken promises. No worker should sit down and just watch, certainly that will not be our portion. We must engage politicians, making sure the downtrodden is accommodated in the next political dispensation.”

Vanguard News Nigeria

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