Politics

Resist FG entry to pension fund, ASUU urges Nigerians

The Academic Staff Union of Universities within the Niger Delta University, Amassoma in Bayelsa State, has urged Nigerians to withstand plans of the Federal Government to make use of pension funds for developmental programmes.

Addressing a press convention on Friday, ASUU chairperson, Lucky Bebeteidoh, mentioned, “Of recent, we have watched the Minister of Finance say they want to dip their hands into the Pension Fund, that is the life-saving of a lot of Nigerians.”

He mentioned the FG is allowed by legislation to entry solely 5 per cent of the funds, “but they want to have it all” and urged Nigerians to withstand the transfer.

The tutorial workers who staged a protest to press residence its calls for, known as on the FG to honour a number of memoranda it signed with ASUU on funding for the revitalisation of public universities.

Members carried placards with inscriptions resembling “Enough will be enough when all the necessary positive interventions are made in public universities”, “Implement UTAS in place of IPPIS: IPPIS is not suitable for universities” and “Niger Delta University needs improved funding from the Bayelsa State Government: NDU needs staff offices, lecture halls, laboratories & hostels for students.”

Earlier, Bebeteidoh instructed journalists that the contentious points embody the unlawful dissolution of governing councils, the discharge of three months of withheld salaries, the discharge of salaries of workers on sabbatical and the discharge of third-party deductions.

Others are cost of EAA, proliferation of personal universities, implementation of studies of visitation panels, implementation of UTAS rather than IPPIS and renegotiation of the 2009 settlement with ASUU.

On the difficulty of renegotiation of the 2009 settlement, Bebeteidoh mentioned after the preliminary cost by former President, Goodluck Jonathan’s administration nothing else has been paid till now.

ASUU mentioned it has resolved to extend media and public engagement on the federal government’s failure to renegotiate the 2009 settlement and start the method of happening strike.

Taking a swipe at those that had negotiated previous agreements on behalf of the FG, he mentioned, “Those identical individuals who got here to the union to barter, saying once we get into energy there will likely be not strikes, ASUU is not going to have to go on strike. Today, it’s those self same set of individuals which have turn out to be obstacles to the renegotiation of the 2009 settlement.

“Release revitalisation funds that were budgeted for last year that have not been released. Those funds help in building infrastructure in public universities.”

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Meanwhile, the union has additionally expressed displeasure over the shortage of consideration to the developmental wants of Niger Delta University by Governor Douye Diri, who’s the customer to the college.

Bebeteidoh acknowledged “Now, coming residence as a press release college, we’ve submitted letters to the state authorities on the 35/25% wage award. The federal tutorial workers have began incomes it with two months’ arrears paid to them final January and we imagine extra arrears have even been paid with the May/June salaries.

“We anticipate the state authorities, Bayelsa State Government, to approve the 35/25% wage award with all urgency. We’re no completely different from federal lecturers which have began incomes it.

“On the difficulty of funding, we anticipate the state authorities to extend funding to the college. They selected the trail of subvention. In our settlement signed September 2022, they selected the trail of subvention and the subvention that they’re bringing, we agreed that it ought to be elevated yearly, and it’s simply been elevated as soon as.

“Infrastructural growth: for those who undergo the college as it’s presently, what you see are federal initiatives – TETFUND, NEEDS Assessment, NDDC – and it’s a state college.

“We are one of the few public universities that don’t have staff accommodation on campus. Staff have to commute from Yenagoa every day”.

In conclusion, Bebeteidoh mentioned, “We are additionally calling on the state authorities to see how they will construct infrastructures within the Niger Delta University.

“We want college buildings. Several of our colleges don’t have college buildings. We want workers lodging. We want workplaces for employees. We want laboratories. How do you train college students with out laboratories?

“And we even want hostels for college kids. What we’ve right here aren’t hostels. We can’t in good conscience name them hostels.

“And the 35/25 per cent government should as soon as possible approve it for the staff of NDU”.

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