The Abia State University (ABSU) chapter of Academic Staff Union of Universities (ASUU) has accused the state governor, Dr Alex Otti of politicizing the issue of payment of salaries of its members.

This is in response to a a comment by the state government that all ASUU Abia State University (ABSU) staff have received their April and May salaries.

The umbrella body of lecturers however says this is not true situation of things, saying payment of salaries to its members in the state is not up-to-date.

In a statement on Saturday by Dr. Chidi S. Mbah the Chairperson, ASUU-ABSU and Dr. Victor U. Obisike who is the Secretary, the body says the news circulating on social media is not true.

“We urge government officials to refrain from politicizing the issue of salary payments at ABSU, as people’s health, family needs, and critical issues such as workers’ productivity are at stake”, the statement reads in part.

It added, “Contrary to the government’s announcement and news circulating on social media, the reality is starkly different. Only a handful of staff with salary accounts at commercial banks have received their April salary, and even fewer have received their May salary. Alarmingly, there are instances where some staff who received their May salary did not receive their April salary, despite using the same bank.

“Moreover, many of the staff who received either their April or May salary experienced unexplained deductions ranging from eight thousand (8,000) to fifty-three thousand (53,000) Naira from their salary at the source.

“Additionally, the majority of staff whose salary accounts are domiciled with the ABSU Microfinance Bank, along with the teaching staff of Abia State University Teaching Hospital, have not received any payments for either April or May. This situation has caused significant financial strain, panic, and uncertainty among the staff.

“Due to this staggered payment system, the unions within the University cannot ascertain the status of their check-off dues, which are typically deducted at the source of payment.


“Furthermore, it is important to highlight that our eleven months of outstanding salary arrears remain unpaid. Despite repeated assurances, not a single month of these arrears has been settled.”

The union therefore urged the government to acknowledge the financial hardships faced by university staff and take immediate action to ensure that all outstanding salaries, including the arrears, are paid promptly and in full.

“We seek transparency and accountability from the government in handling this matter and hope for a swift resolution to alleviate the financial distress faced by the staff of ABSU.

“We appeal to our dear Governor and Visitor to our University, His Excellency, Dr. Alex Chioma Oti, OFR, who means well for the only state-owned university and has left a standing instruction to pay all state government workers no later than the 28th of every month, to quickly address this issue by calling the attention of the concerned officials, so as not to truncate his good intentions for the state workforce.”

Meanwhile, the Senior Special Assistant on Public Communication, Dodoh Okafor insists that funds have been made available for the payment of outstanding salaries, blaming any delay in dispensing of same to affected workers on technical difficulties.

According to him, the technical difficulties is due to the migration of the institution to the TSA framework, noting that some workers have started receiving their salaries for the months of April and May.

“To be clear, the Governor continues to insist that regular payment of salaries and pensions for the duration of his tenure is non-negotiable as a worker is worthy of his wage. Funds for payment of salaries and pensions are released before the consideration of all other financial obligations. At no point has the Governor shirked in his monthly obligation to all legitimate employees of the State Government, including staff of all tertiary the State, particularly ABSU.

“At any rate, it must be stated clearly that the Abia State Government is only responsible for channeling the funds into the relevant individual and institutional accounts. It would be grossly unfair to hold the Government to account for the interactions between individuals banks and their customers”, he noted.



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