Withheld salaries: SSANU, NASU members protest at Unilag College of Medicine

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Members of Senior Staff Association of Nigerian Universities (SSANU) and Non -Academic Staff Union of Educational and Associated Institutions (NASU) at the College of Medicine ,University of Lagos(CMUL),on Tuesday, staged a protest over withheld salaries.

Mr Tunde Aderibigbe, National Executive Council (NEC) member of NASU, one of those who led the protest in Lagos, said that the workers were unhappy that their four months salaries were still being withheld despite many appeals to the Federal Government.

He also said the workers also staged the protest because some of the agreements the government signed with the two unions had not been fulfilled.

“We entered into so many agreements with President Muhammadu Buhari administration, including the issue of earned allowances ,which are yet to be attended to.

“The one that is really disturbing the minds of our members is that all the four unions in the universities embarked on strike in 2022, and at the end of the day, our (NASU/SSANU)salaries were withheld.

“We signed an agreement that after the strike, no member of our unions will be intimidated or victimised ,but we were surprised that our salaries were withheld.

“We felt that was intimidation and victimisation, we did not take them to court, our sister union did, and at the end of the day, they were paid after the presidential pardon, which covers all the four unions,”he said.

Aderibigbe,also a staff member of CMUL, said the protest was to call on government to release their salaries without delay.

Mr Mohammed Ibrahim, Chairman, Senior Staff Association of Nigerian Universities (SSANU), said that they staged the protest to make the government aware of what he called the injustice being done to them.

Ibrahim said that government should be run with truth, conscience,lamenting that the many agreements the union had with government had not been fulfilled.

He said by not honouring the agreements , government had displayed insensitivity towards the plight of members of the unions.

The chairman said that it was wrong not to pay SSANU and NASU out of the four unions that went on strike.

According to him,members of the two unions feel cheated about the withheld salaries.

Ibrahim who noted that members of the unions were important to the running of universities ,urged the government to release the salaries without delay.

He appealed to the Minister of Education to table their demands before the President ,for action.

Mr Bukayo Ayantoye, Chairman, Non Academic Staff Union of Educational and Associated Institutions (NASU), said that the withheld four months salaries had lost value owing to inflation.

“A lot of people even took loans with interest due to our unpaid salaries, because it is not possible to survive without a month salary not to talk of four months.

“To us, we see it as victimisation , especially as members of sister unions ,who went on strike with us were paid.

“We feel cheated and want to believe they are treating us this way because they consider us irrelevant,”he said.

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