The National President of the Academic Staff Union of Polytechnics, (ASUP) Anderson Ezeibe, has threatened to lead the Organization to an indefinite strike if the Federal Government fails to meet the union’s demands by June.
Recall that ASUP has already embarked on a two-week warning strike and has now threatened to go on indefinite strike after the expiration of the ongoing warning strike should their demands remain outstanding.
Ezeibe mentioned this while addressing members of the union at a meeting held at the Federal Polytechnic Ilaro, Ogun State on Tuesday.
At the emergency NEC meeting held last Wednesday, the union deliberated on the non-release of the approved revitalisation fund for the sector, the non-release of 10 months arrears of the new minimum wage, and the non-release of the reviewed normative instruments for institution/management and programmes accreditation, among others.
Ezeibe urged his members to be prepared for more industrial actions, saying, “the strike is not ending after two weeks, that is the point, and the strike may not even end this year.”
The ASUP President lamented that the government failed to honour its agreements almost one year after it signed a Memorandum of Action with the union.
He said the union had gone on a three-month strike in 2021 to protest the government’s refusal to meet its demands.
Ezeibe noted that the two-week warning strike currently embarked upon by the union members is to signal the first layer of their protest against what he described as the irresponsibility and lack of commitment to improving the education sector.
He said, “We call the attention of the Nigerian government and the public to the level of irresponsibility being displayed by agencies of government and functionaries of government in these agencies on our issues. What we are seeing is a clear absence of commitment by the government.
“The meeting was more or less for mobilisation as you know we are on strike, and our members need to get the right perspective on the issue.
“So, the meeting essentially was to raise the morale of our members, explain the issues with them and encourage them to stand firm.
“Our members should be prepared for more strikes; this is just a two-week definite strike; it also means that we can recommend the strike, depending on the government’s decision. That is why I am telling my members to be ready.”