Non academic staff vow to shut down UI, matriculation disrupted

 0004 UI Main Gate - CopyIt is barely a month now that the non-academic unions of the University of Ibadan, UI, protested and paralyzed all activities over some allowances the institution owes the staff, the non academic staff this morning embarked on another round of protest over non payment of some allowances.

As at the time of filing this report, they were already marching to Trenchard Hall to disrupt the on-going orientation programme for the new students who will be matriculating tomorrow.

As they are strategising how to disrupt the matriculation slated to start 9am tomorrow, the executive members of the non academic staff ordered all their members to stop coming to work.

The protesting non-academic unions in the institutions are: Senior Staff Association of Universities, SSANU, Non-Academic Staff Union, NASU, and National Association of Academic Technologists (NAAT).

The unions that were able to mobilize about 20,000 members as at the time of filing this report have occupied the main gate of the institution thereby disallowing other staff of the institution who were not their members to gain entrance into the premier institution.

All the academic staff who live off campus and students of primary and secondary schools sited on campus had to return home.

The crisis started yesterday when all the executive members of the non academic staff started mobilizing their members for a showdown today. Some of the non academic staff were sent text messages around 10pm yesterday asking them to fully participate in the protest.

Explaining the rationale for a complete showdown, the chairman of SSANU, Comrade Wale Akinremi alleged that the institution’s Vice Chancellor, Professor Abel Idowu Olayinka, has demonstrated enough insensitivity against the plights of the workers stressing that they would force him to his kneel.

He said that their protest would continue until the school management pays what its owe the staff.

According to him, he alleged that yesterday, men of the Directorate of State Security, DSS picked some of their members and after questioning them for some hours, released them with a condition that they must report back to their office 10am today.

He said that the school management has alleged that the non academic staff were behind the protest that the students staged last Saturday over lack of electricity and water adding, “The VC said that he would not pay us the allowance we are asking for. Some groups in the institution are asking him not to pay us what he is owing us. He said that we can closed down the school if we desire. He has also threatened to sack some members of non academic staff”.

The unions have been fighting the new management of the institution led by Olayinka over shortfall in their monthly pay package.

Whenever the non-academic staff of the institution embark on protest, they throw caution into the wind and take law into their hands by attacking the academic staff who are not their members and flogging some teaching staff out of the classroom.

However, about two weeks, the premier institution decried the reduction in the Federal Government allocation to the institution appealing to its staff to bear with the situation as it will improve as soon as the budget is passed.

In several meetings held with the unions on campus, the institution’s Vice Chancellor discussed the financial status of the institution with the staff appealing that they should be patient with him as all the backlog being owed would be paid as soon as the allocation to the institution is normalized.

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