Organised Labour under the aegis of Association of Senior Civil Servants of Nigeria (ASCSN) has concluded mobilization to shut down Kings College, Lagos and Federal Government College, Idoani, Ondo State unless the Federal Government takes urgent steps to pay the salary of Education Officers outstanding since May 2016 in the Schools.
This was contained in a statement signed by its Secretary-General, Comrade Alade Bashir Lawal and made available to newsmen on Friday.
The Union emphasized that Education Officers in the Schools would not resume classes on Thursday 15th September 2016 unless the salary owed them since May 2016 were paid by Wednesday 14th September 2016.
It regretted that since May 2016 Education Officers in King’s College, Lagos and Federal Government College, Idoani, Ondo State have been put in a situation of financial embarrassment in violation of Public Service Rules (PSR).
“It seems that the decision not to pay salaries to Education Officers in these schools since May is an experiment which will be extended to other schools in due course if there is no resistance from the workers and their Trade Unions as the Federal Ministry of Finance and the Budget Office of the Federation have continued to shift blames on the matter.
The Union emphasized that the other 102 Federal Unity Colleges have been mobilized to join the strike if the Federal Government still refused to pay Education Officers in the two schools their salaries because “injury to one is injury to all”.
“We also wish to recall that during the last Federal Administrations, salaries and allowances including promotion arrears were not paid to some categories of officers and the Association is still battling to have those arrears of workers’ legitimate entitlements settled,” the Union stated.
The ASCSN regretted that the present Federal Government which promised to change the content and form of governance for the better had started to owe workers their salaries after they had rendered service to the country.
It stressed that because salaries of civil servants were meagre and could not take them to the bus stop let alone take them home when paid regularly, now that the salaries could not be paid at all, it had been a tale of hardship for Education Officers some of whom could no longer afford to buy medication to treat themselves after going to the hospitals and getting prescriptions.
“It is indeed sad that the Federal Government has decided to subject these workers and their families to untold hardship whereas the welfare of the citizens is the main reason why governments exist in the first instance,” the Union lamented.
The ASCSN, therefore, urged the Federal Government to take urgent steps and ensure that salaries of Education Officers in King’s College, Lagos, and Federal Government College, Idoani, Ondo State, outstanding since May 2016 were paid without further delay so as to douse tension that had been building up not only in the two schools but also in the other 102 Federal Unity Colleges over the issue.
The Union accordingly advised parents and guardians not to release their children and wards to resume classes at King’s Colleges and Federal Government Colleges, Idoani, Ondo State by 15th September 2016 in order not to subject them to avoidable hardship unless the salaries owed Education Officers in the schools were paid by Wednesday 14th September 2016.