Benue State University Chapter Of Academic Staff Union Of Universities Vows To Continue With Strike Declared By Its Leadership Despite Pleas By Governor Samuel Ortom.
John Shiaondo, Makurdi
Benue State University (BSU) chapter of Academic staff Union of Universities (ASUU) has vowed to continue with strike action embarked by the body despite pleas by governor Samuel Ortom for them to suspend the strike. In an interview with newsmen in his office yesterday shortly after their congress meeting, Chairman of ASUU-BSU, Ukooh David Ikoni, said the congress of the union had insisted that unless their salary are paid before they would consider suspension of the strike.
According to him, governor Samuel Ortom had held a meeting with leaders of the union and he pleaded with them to suspend the action but they had insisted to hold the meeting before they would communicate their dethe state police command to defend himself based on the petition by Ezea. “I got a call when I was away that policemen besieged my house, but when they couldn’t see me, they dropped an invitation letter.
Immediately I returned, as a law abiding citizen, I had to go to the police. As I speak with you, am making statement at the State CID,” he said. Asked if he was being detained, Nwoga said he was not sure of what would be the next line of action until he was through with the statement, adding however that “you know once you are through with statement, you must be bailed.
But, at the moment, the policemen here are so friendly and I hope it continues after the statecision. Dr. Ikoni further explained that apart from the nonpayment of their salaries, there were other pending issues that might lead the Union to another strike such as non implementation of pension and gratuity policy by the Institution, Heavy burden of tax, non implementation of National Health scheme for members , amendment of the University law. “These issues form basis for which some of our members are transferring their services to other Universities,” he noted.
He however stated that if their salaries were paid, they would have conceded to the Governor’s appeal despite the pending remote issues and considered resuming academic activities. “Our members have disagreed with the Governor’s appeal to call off the strike because the decision would not go down well with them as they have been on strike for the past three months without salaries.” “Members therefore decided that the situation has thrown them to untold hardship and because of that they cannot in this situation go back to class without even collecting their salaries,” he maintained.