Fulfill Your Promises Or Face Strike: COEASU Dares FG

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From Maiharaji Altine, Gusau

The Colleges of Education Academic Staff Union (COEASU)   has given the Federal government 21 days ultimatum to fulfill its promise or face industrial action. 

The Vice President and Northwest Coordinator of the union, Comrade  Shehu Jabaka Muhammad made this known while speaking to newsmen at the Federal College of Education Technical Gusau in Zamfara State. 

 He maitained that there was the need for the Federal Government to call on all stakeholders to a round table meeting to avoid  the industrial action. 

He said, “The Council urged the Federal Government to do the needful to end the current spate of strike actions as a result of non-implementation of the various agreements reached with staff unions in tertiary institutions”.

According to him, the Federal Government had failed to address some burning issues that have been lingering for several years.

Some of the issues which the Federal Government refused to address according to him included the recalcitrant insistence on IPPIS against more reliable alternative of UTAS.

“The Integrated Personnel and Payroll Information System (IPPIS) is causing more havoc to tertiary institutions than good”. 

“Government has refused to heed to the Unions demand for the adoption of the University Transparency and Accountability Solution (UTAS), an alternative innovation of the Academic Staff Union of Universities (ASUU)”.

“Dilly-Dallying Posture of the Federal Government to renegotiation of COEASU-FGN 2010 Agreement While the long-anticipated renegotiation of COEASU-FGN 2010 Agreement holds enormous promise for mutual resolution of several challenges bedeviling the COE system”.

Muhammad stressed that, the Federal Government has failed to accord the exercise deserved priority. 

He maintained that the Federal Government has refused to constitute her own renegotiation team after acknowledging receipt of the Unions team list, on her own request, for over two months now.

He also cited poor funding of Colleges of Education and poor vonditions across the state-owned Colleges of Education as another major setback which the union wanted to be addressed.

He said, “In spite of the unions agitations and Governments persistent promise of redress, both theFederal and State Colleges of Education remain poorly funded”.

He expressed disgust that the union members, especially in State Colleges of Education, continue to suffer untold hardships through nonpayment of salary and salary arrears.

He stated that, “Refusal to implement the statutory salary structure in full, extraneous promotion criteria, idiosyncratic policies, non/improper domestication of 65-year retirement age for workers in the COE system”.

“Multiple promotions without financial effects, repression of Union activities, to mention just a few”.

“Many Colleges find it difficult to run smoothly due to non-release of running cost by Government”. 

“Many State Governments have abdicated their responsibility as proprietors to TETFund, as the only projects found in the Colleges are TETFund projects”.

He said if the Federal Government did not meet their demands within the next two weeks, they would be forced to embark on industrial action.

“We have given 21 days to the Federal Government to address these issues and if at the end of the ultimatum nothing is done, we will call a meeting and finally embark on indefinite strike”. Concluded Muhammad.

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