OAUSTECH staff protest non-implementation of wage award
By Kayode Olabanji, Okitipupa
The staff of Olusegun Agagu University of Science and Technology (OAUSTECH), Okitipupa, have protested over the non-implementation of wage awards for them.
The staff under Senior Staff Association of Nigeria Universities (SSANU), Non-Academic Staff Unions and Allied Educational Institutions (NASU) and National Association of Academic Technologists (NAAT) staged the protest against what they described as injustice to them.
The institution’s gate was locked, while the protest caused gridlock on the Okitipupa-Igbokoda expressway as protesters blocked part of the expressway.
The staff sang solidarity songs and carried placards with various inscriptions “We are workers not slaves”, “No discrimination in wage award payment”, “We have not been paid minimum wage since 2019”, among others.
The Chairman of Joint Action Congress (JAC) of the unions, Mr Temidayo Temola, while addressing newsmen said that the protest was in line with JAC of tertiary institutions in the state.
He said that it was an injustice for the state government not to implement the minimum wage of N30,000 since 2019.
He said that payment of the wage award of N35,000 was sectional, as university workers in the state were not paid, adding that the institution’s subvention was drastically reduced and “yet was delayed.”
According to him, he said the unions had made several representations to the state government without success, adding the only option left was protest.
He said,”for the record and avoidance of doubt, the agitations are: non-implementation of 2019 minimum wage, discrimination in payment of N35,000 wage award and delay in release of subvention to the institution”
“Subsidy removal affected all of us; we go to the same market, board the same buses and face the same hardship; so why the discrimination in wage award payment by not including university workers.
“We are university workers and not slaves on our land, so we call on Gov. Lucky Aiyedatiwa to as a matter of urgency intervene on these issues.
“We will shut down all state universities if we continue to be discriminated upon; we will continue and not stop the protest until all our demands are met,” Temola said.
Efforts to speak with the Vice Chancellor of the institution, Prof. Temi Ologunorisa, on the development proved abortive as calls made to his mobile phone were not returned.