By Anayo Onukwugha, Port Harcourt
The Owerri and Port Harcourt Zones of the Academic Staff Union of Universities (ASUU) has declared that several lecturers of mostly federal universities in the country have not received salary since February 2020.
ASUU zonal coordinator, Uzo Onyebinama, in a statement made available to LEADERSHIP Sunday in Port Harcourt, in reaction to claims by the Minister of Labour and Employment, Dr. Chris Ngige university lecturers in the country were receiving their salaries despite the fact that they were on strike.
Onyebinama said: “Recently, on Channels TV, and in the view of the whole world, the Honourable Minister of Labour and Employment, in a blissful ignorance made fictious claims about ‘head-strong’ lecturers in federal universities receiving their wages.
“This suggests to us that the so called ‘conciliator’ is in very stupendous oblivion of the issues in the matter he is conciliating. The Minister should please take note that the ‘head-strong’ Accountant General of the Federation has not paid many lecturers in various federal universities eight months from February to September 2020.
“Many lecturers in Michael Okpara University of Agriculture, Umudike and University of Maiduguri have not been paid for five months for April, May, June, July, August and September 2020. All other lecturers in other federal universities have not been paid for three months from July to September 2020.
“That the Honourable Minister is unaware of these facts is very shocking. His primary responsibility and he should know it, is to ensure that a worker receives his wages as and when due, as a right.
It is pertinent to instruct here that the Accountant General of the Federation , leading other ‘head-strong’ officials of the federal government, is deliberately using the wages of lecturers as a hunger weapon to coerce them into IPPIS, from where they feed fat from $140million loan for federal civil service reforms.”