Don’t go on strike, FG begs polytechnics staff

Stories by Felix Khanoba

The Federal Government has appealed to the Senior Staff Association of Nigeria Polytechnics (SSANIP) to shelve its proposed strike.

Minister of State for Education, Chukwuemeka Nwajiuba, made the call during a meeting with a delegation of SSANIP led by its National President, Philip Ogunsipe.

A statement made available to The AUTHORITY in Abuja and signed by Ben Goong, Director of Public Relations at the Federal Ministry of Education, said the meeting was to dissuade the association from embarking on the industrial action it had threatened if its demands are not met at the end of a seven-day ultimatum.

The minister, who expressed displeasure at the incessant obstructions to the free flow of academic activities in the nation’s tertiary institutions, emphasized government’s determination to find lasting solutions to the menace.

Nwajiuba pointed out that the academic and professional aspirations of Nigerian students have been greatly tampered with by strikes, hence the need to put a permanent stop to industrial actions.

In her remarks, Director, Tertiary Department of the Ministry, Mrs. Rakiya Gambo Ilyasu, revealed the government’s efforts to address the grievances of the association.

On the lingering issues on the Integrated Personnel Payroll Information System (IPPIS), the director informed the association that the Office of the Accountant General of the Federation, (OAGF) is already finetuning the payment platform to “accommodate the anomalies being experienced.”

On the reconstitution of Governing Councils in the Polytechnics and Colleges of Technology for Federal Government owned institutions, she disclosed that the government was aware of the issue as the reconstitution of the councils will soon be announced.

Speaking on the renegotiation of the 2019 agreement, Gambo revealed that provision has been made in the 2020 Appropriation Act for the Renegotiation Committee to resume sitting.

On his part, National President of SSANIP, Ogunsipe, urged the Federal Government to urgently attend to the demands of the association.

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