Subsidy Removal: Ensure worker-friendly resolution, SSANIP tells FG


Senior Staff Association of Nigeria Polytechnics (SSANIP) has asked the Federal Government to ensure that they factor in a worker-friendly resolution when they resume negotiations over subsidy removal.

This is just as SSANIP commended the Nigerian Labour Congress (NLC) decision to respect the rule of law and suspend the proposed national strike over the removal of subsidy in respect of the injunction from the National Industrial Court.

This is contained in a communique issued at the end of the 70th General Executive Council (GEC) meeting of SSANIP held between Tuesday and Thursday in Abuja and signed by the National President of SSANIP, Comrade Adebanjo Ogunsipe, and the Acting National Secretary, Comrade Emmanuel Enyiegor.

“Council-in-Session noted unfolding developments, as the aftermath of the presidential pronouncement on the removal of oil subsidy, the face-off between the Federal Government and labour unions.

“Council resolved to commend the mature and courageous decision of the NLC to respect the rule of law and suspend the proposed National Strike in respect of the fraudulently secured injunction from the National Industrial Court.

“It, however, enjoined the Federal Government to exhibit a strong commitment to ensuring that a worker-friendly resolution of the issues involved is arrived at when negotiations resume”, the communique said.

The communique also stated that the council-in-session deliberated on the report of haphazard payment of arrears of the new minimum wage in many Federal Polytechnics and was miffed at the fact that many members in these branches were yet to be paid.

The council resolved to charge the office of the Accountant-General of the Federation, to look into all cases of omission and short-changing in a bid to ensure that these observed anomalies are rectified.

It also charged that the payment schedule for the arrears should be made available for respective beneficiary institutions to allow for easy collation of complaints.

The council further noted that in spite of the many promises from the government, the much-expected reviewed scheme of service document is yet to be released.

“Council, therefore, charged the head of the civil service of the federation, who is saddled with the responsibility to endeavour to fast-track the immediate release of the scheme of service document to avert industrial disharmony in the polytechnic system,” the communique noted.

Furthermore, the council deliberated on poor funding and administration in many state polytechnics in Nigeria and resolved that state governments need to do more in the deployment of funds for the development of these polytechnics as well as the engagement of capable hands in the administration of state polytechnics and similar institutions in their domain.

The communique further stated that the council observed the backlog of salary arrears owed members in many polytechnics, particularly, such institutions as Rufus Giwa Polytechnic, Owo, Ondo State (11 months), Abdu Gusau Polytechnic, Talata Mafara, Zamfara State (4 months). Osun State Polytechnic, Iree, Osun State (14 months). Osun State College of Technology, Esa Oke, Osun State (14 months). Abia State Polytechnic, Aba (35 months), all State Polytechnics in Benue state (11 months).

It noted the hardship that members in such institutions had been subjected to and thus enjoined all concerned state governments to wake up to their responsibilities.

The council expressed its disappointment at the continued non-release of funds for the payment of outstanding promotion arrears from 2017 to 2022 in many federal polytechnics.

It also noted with dismay, the willful disregard for the provisions of the new (amended) Polytechnic Act, 2019, especially by state governments. Council deliberated on the particular situation in Rufus Giwa Polytechnic, Owo, Ondo State, where the sitting rector was reported to have passed the retirement age and is still occupying the office.