Tertiary institutions workers in Kwara begin strike
Staff of Kwara State owned tertiary institutions yesterday embarked on an industrial action, which they said won’t be called off until the state government pays backlog of salaries owed them.
Last week, the Non Teaching Staff Union (NASU) of the affected institutions embarked on an indefinite strike over non payment of five months salaries.
The workers said it became necessary for them to embark on the strike since the state government has “continued to pay little or no attention to their plight”.
They lamented that some of their members have died due to the situation. The affected institutions include; the Kwara Colleges of Education in llorin, Oro, Lafiagi and the College of Arabic and lslamic Legal studies in llorin.
Chairman, Committee of Unions in Tertiary Institutions (CUTI) , Comrade AbdulKareem Amuda-Kannike, while speaking with our correspondent, said the state government refused to respond despite the ultimatum issued.
“We have started the strike. NASU commenced their strike last week and others have already joined them. We have gone round the institutions to effect it and we are happy that all our members complied. They shut down their schools before we got there because they are tired of working without pay”, he said.
“We issued a 21 day ultimatum, which lapsed, then another 14 day ultimatum. After that, we issued another seven day which also ended without any response either positive or negative from the state government. We have therefore declared an indefinite strike until backlog of salaries are paid. The hardship is no longer bearable for our members and their families. At this stage we are now, we are not going to negotiate until backlog of salaries are cleared,” Kannike said.
Meanwhile, Senior Special Assistant to Governor Abdullfattah Ahmed on Media and Communications, Dr. Muideen Akorede, has appealed to the striking workers to return to work.
“Government calls on the striking workers to return to work while we work out a solution to the problem in conjunction with authorities of the affected institutions,” he said.
From left: Managing Director, Kewod Integrated Services Ltd., Mr Odumale Ogedegbe; Director General, Peoples Democratic Institute (PDI), Dr. Lanre Adebayo; former governorship aspirant and PDP chieftain in Rivers State, Hon. Nimi Walson-Jack, during Walson-Jack's courtesy visit to PDI in Abuja.