Striking Nigerian polytechnic lecturers may embark on a “massive protest” in the capital city, Abuja, next week, according to the Academic Staff Union of Polytechnics President, Chibuzor Asomugha.
Speaking on a radio programme on Ray Power FM and reported by news.naij.com on Friday, Asomugha said the move might be necessary to press for the implementation of their demands as their last meeting with government representatives was held on March 26, 2014.
ASUP members commenced strike on October 13, 2013, to press for a number of demands which include improved remuneration and the constitution of the Governing Councils of Federal Polytechnics.
Asomugha said the government delegation had agreed at their last meeting with ASUP to brief President Goodluck Jonathan on the development and come up with a ‘Memorandum of Understanding’ to be signed by the two parties.
Although, Asomugha did not give a date for the protest, he promised that market women, students, lecturers, labour unions and other concerned citizens would be involved.
He also expressed concern with the way the Federal Government was handling polytechnic education in Nigeria.
He added that the union was still seeking an amicable solution to the situation and had appealed to the Senate President, David Mark, and the Speaker of the House of Representatives, Aminu Tambuwal, for their intervention.
Meanwhile, Mark had promised to look into the matter after conclusion of work on the 2014 budget, which had just been passed by the Senate on Wednesday and subsequently by the House of Representatives on Thursday.
Asomugha added the striking lecturers were not bothered by the government’s “No work, No pay policy”. He said that the lecturers’ salaries for March 2014 had not been paid following a government circular issued on Mach 21 directing that salary payments be stopped.
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