Strike Looms in Polytechnics as Minister Meets ASUP to Avert Action

Nigeria's Minister of State for Education, Emeka Nwajiuba
  • Union Laments Lack of Support to Meet Covid-19 protocols for resumption – ASUP

A meeting between Nigeria’s Minister of State for Education, Emeka Nwajiuba, and executive members of the Academic Staff Union of Polytechnics (ASUP) held on Tuesday, in Abuja, to further discuss the disputes of the union, which could lead to another nationwide strike within the Education sector.

At the meeting, which was a move to avert an impending strike by ASUP, the union’s President, Anderson Ezeibe, restated their long-standing grievances, which predate even Covid-19.

Against the announcement by the Federal Government directing schools to reopen for academic activities after Covid-19 lockdown, Ezeibe argued that polytechnics in the country were not ready to resume normal academic activities.

The ASUP helsman cited not having most of the protocols outlined by the Presidential Task Force on Covid-19 in place as a reason.

According to him, beyond the sentiments of announcing that all institutions resume, the Polytechnics lacked support to enforce resumption protocols, to which Nwajiuba appealed to public-spirited individuals in communities where these institutions are located to come to their aid.

Furthermore, Ezeibe did not mince words when he said ASUP members are deeply regretting their decision to enroll for the IPPIS. This he said was because the policy had been characterized with the omission of bonafide staff names, non-remittance of check-off dues, including closing the windows to effect corrections where necessary.

One of the issues raised was the NEEDS Assessment carried out in all public Polytechnics, which was yet to be implemented as no single institution had benefitted from the exercise.

Part of the dispute is the victimization of members over their participation in previous industrial actions, saying five staff of Institute of Management Technology (IMT) Enugu, including two staff of Federal Polytechnic, Bida, Niger State have been dismissed without tangible reasons.