The Rector of the Abia State Polytechnic, Aba, Prof Martin Ifeanacho, has expressed concern over the huge wage bill and running costs of the institution.
Recall that workers of the Polytechnic had recently embarked on strike over non-payment of eight months’ salary arrears, thus bringing the business of teaching and learning to an abrupt halt.
Prof Ifeanacho, who stated this in a chat with newsmen in his office, disclosed that his administration inherited the six months’ salary arrears and blamed earlier administrations in the institution for unnecessary recruitment without considering the needs of the institution.
He said, “This management has not recruited a single staff and has been prudently managing resources available to us. In terms of generating funds, we generate money but it doesn’t come in lump sum.
“School fees come in trickles, overhead cost, diesel and other costs leave us in deficit. Our books are open for vetting, if you have what we generate on one hand, also consider our wage bill and running cost of the institution.
“Even when we decided to pay each month salary, the arrears are still outstanding. Again, we have not received Paris Club fund from the government. We assure you that any fund available to the institution will be judiciously applied to the payment of salaries.”
The rector, however, assured that the polytechnic would not sack workers despite the financial challenges bedeviling the institution.
“Some organisations have negotiated pay cuts to enable them pull through the recession. Abia Polytechnic won’t sack workers, but we will consider other options available to us,” he said.