Accuses Government of Betrayal
The Leadership of the Nigeria Labour Congress (NLC), Ebonyi State Chapter, on Tuesday, called on the Federal Government to reopen the tertiary Institutions and demand that the federal government resolve all the lingering industrial disputes between it and all the university-based unions in the country.
The state chairman, Comr. Ikechukwu Nwafor and all affiliate members of NLC in the State participated in the nationwide protest in solidarity with the ongoing strike action by the Academic Staff Union of Universities (ASSU).
Addressing journalists in Abakaliki, Comr.Ikwchukwu appealed with the Federal Government to urgently look into the issue and return the students back to schools, while meeting the demands of the workers.
“Our workers in the university have reached agreement with the government severally and Federal government reneged in those agreement, at this point we insist that those agreement should be met, let the workers welfare be met, let them respect workers rights, let our children go back to school. ”
“We join other States including Abuja to say that the Federal Government should be fast and make our children go back to school, enough is enough! He stated.
He described the government as insensitivity to the plight of the people, while accusing them of betraying their mandate.
“Federal Government has betrayed the educational sector, and Ebonyi State Government led by Governor David Umahi have also betrayed the workers of Ebonyi State.
“We stand to say that those who betrayed the workers of the state will himself be betrayed, ” he stated.
The chairmen of Academic Staff Union of Universities, ASUU, Ebonyi State University, Alex Ekweme Federal University, Ndufu- Alike Ikwo (AE-FUNAI) , Ebonyi College of Education, among others who spoke to journalists during the protest revealed that the strike will continue until their demands are met by federal government and Ebonyi state government.
Some of the ASUU chairmen; AE-FUNAI and EBSU, Comr. Egwu Oguaga and Comr. Ikechukwu Okorie said:”We are here today to call for emancipation of our country from the hands of those who wants to kill it. The main purpose of this struggle is to tell Nigerians that we have government that is insincere to the plights of Nigerians.
“In five months, university lecturers are at home and we cannot teach our students. The lecturers are not well taken care of. We shall not back down until Federal Government does the needful , we shall not back down until the 2009 agreement is implemented , we shall not back down until Integrated Payroll and Personal Information System (IPPIS) is recalled, we shall not back down until the Universal Transparency and Accountability Solution (UTAS) is implemented”
Also Speaking, AE-FUNAI, SSANU Chairman, Comr. Emmanuel Chibata condemned the government’s attitude towards the plight of the people.
He called on the government to immediately implement the University Perculiar Payroll Payment System (U3PS) and quash the Integrated Payroll and Personal Information System (IPPIS) which has been used to shortchange the workers.
Highlights of the peaceful protests were a march from Pastoral Center, to Stadium , where protesters carried various placards with inscriptions; “ASUU demands FG to give us better pay package”, “FG: deploy UTAS in full that will accommodate the percularity of the university”, “FG:Improved welfare is our right”, “FG: bring our children back to school”, ” among others and the submission of letter to the office of the Governor.