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

Our correspondent, who visited the school, observed that the two unions commenced the strike after an emergency congress held on Monday, March 18, 2024.

According to a letter jointly signed by the chairpersons of the unions, Kpamor Ruth and  Saa Girgi Moses, SSAN and NASU said JAC waited patiently till the expiration of the ultimatum without positive response to the demands of the unions.

“Consequently, JAC directed her members in the universities and inter-university centres nationwide to commence a seven-day warning strike effective Monday, 18th March, 2024 in the first instance,” the letter read in parts.

The unions, in the letter addressed to the Vice Chancellor of the university tagged “Commencement of A-7 Day JAC Nationwide Warning Strike,” therefore craved the indulgence of the university management to understand with SSANU and NASU JOSTUM Branch as they embark on the warning strike.

The union cited some of the issues driving the strike, including “Renegotiation of 2009 Federal Government/SSANU agreement, reconstitution of governing councils of universities, payment of four months withheld salaries, the release of earned allowances, and improved funding of our universities.”


The Secretary of SSANU, Festus Omemu, who spoke to journalists, condemned the government’s failure to implement its agreements with the unions, especially as it concerns withheld salaries and funding of the institutions.

He said, “The Federal Government is not funding the universities. We have to fund the universities. These are people, in their own time, when they went to the universities, they were treated like special candidates, giving them food and other things free and before they finished, some of them had appointments already waiting for them with cars.”

Omemu faulted the government for not fulfilling its agreement, saying, “This is the first time in the history of the university system, especially since some of us joined, that it is heard that a union went on strike and their salaries were withheld without paying them.

“When they withheld ASUU salary and ours, many people died because of the economic situation. We lost many professors, and many of our staff died because they had health issues and were on medication. They couldn’t afford it, and they had no options and died.

“This means that the government is killing people without weapons, using hardship to kill people without using arms. They are killing people and saying we should not cry. The government is not doing the right thing.

“We are already on strike for seven days, and at the end of it, if the Federal Government fails, we will go into indefinite strike.”



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