The Academic Staff Union of Polytechnics on Monday began a nationwide seven-day strike over shortfall in payment of salaries and allowances among other demands.
The National President of the union, Mr Usman Dutse, said on telephone in Lagos that the warning strike would end on Feb. 6.
According to him, the strike will affect all federal and state-owned polytechnics and Colleges of Technology.
He said, “We have issued a circular directing all our members to down tools from 12.00 noon today (Monday).
“For about a year now, we have been receiving a fraction of our salary due to a cut from the budget office.
“Also, our allowances were withdrawn due to the shortfall; non-implementation of the NEEDS assessment conducted some years back.
“There are also issues of interference from the governing councils of some institutions and victimisation of our members.
“Some states like Osun, Oyo and Edo have not paid salaries for several months.
“There are also issues of establishment of Polytechnic Commission and HND/B.Sc dichotomy.”
He said that after the warning strike, the union would hold a National Executive Council meeting to decide the next line of action.
ASUP Chairman, Yaba College of Technology chapter, Lagos, Mr Adeyemi Aromolaran, also confirmed the chapter’s readiness to comply with the directive on the national strike.
Aromolaran said that the chapter would begin the strike after its congress.
“Yes, we have been directed to commence a one-week strike by our national body.
“We are holding a congress now to deliberate on the issue and we are ready to comply with the directive.
“We will direct all our members to down tools with immediate effect.
“The strike is very important following recent developments in the polytechnic sector.”
Meanwhile lecturers of the Lagos State Polytechnic, Ikorodu Chapter, complied with the strike directive.
The General Secretary, Academic Staff Union of Polytechnics, LASPOTECH chapter, Mr Uthman Olayinka, said that the strike began at noon as directed.
Olayinka said the strike was total and comprehensive as “all lecturers are expected not to lecture or participate in any academic activity until the strike elapses’’.
He said that the union had informed the management of the action and also sent a letter of notification to Gov. Akinwunmi Ambode of Lagos State.
“A committee on strike compliance has been set up in all the schools in the institution to ensure effective compliance to the strike by the union members,’’ he said.