Benue Varsity Staff Join Nationwide Strike

By Milcah Tanimu

The Joint Action Committee comprising the Senior Staff Association of Nigerian Universities (SSANU) and the Non-Academic Staff Union of Joseph Sawuan Tarka University Makurdi, formerly known as Federal University of Agriculture Makurdi, commenced a seven-day warning strike on Monday, aligning with their counterparts nationwide.

Following an emergency congress held on Monday, March 18, 2024, both unions at the university unanimously decided to initiate the strike action. In a letter jointly signed by the chairpersons of the unions, Kpamor Ruth and Saa Girgi Moses, SSANU and NASU stated that the decision was made after the expiration of an ultimatum without a satisfactory response from authorities regarding the unions’ demands.

The letter explained that the Joint Action Committee directed its members across universities and inter-university centers nationwide to begin the warning strike on Monday, March 18, 2024. The unions cited several grievances including the renegotiation of the 2009 Federal Government/SSANU agreement, the reconstitution of governing councils of universities, payment of four months withheld salaries, the release of earned allowances, and improved funding for universities.

Addressing the Vice Chancellor of the university in a letter titled “Commencement of A-7 Day JAC Nationwide Warning Strike,” the unions sought the understanding of the university management as they embarked on the strike.

Secretary of SSANU, Festus Omemu, condemned the government’s failure to honor agreements with the unions, particularly regarding withheld salaries and inadequate funding for institutions. Omemu highlighted the dire consequences of the government’s actions, pointing out instances where individuals suffered due to economic hardship induced by salary withholdings.

Expressing frustration with the government’s stance, Omemu warned that if the Federal Government fails to address the issues raised, the unions would escalate their action to an indefinite strike after the seven-day warning period.


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