NLC strike: Colleges of education shutdown

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The Colleges of Education Academic Staff Union, COEASU, has joined the indefinite warning strike called by the Nigeria Labour Congress, NLC.

The union cited failure of the Federal Government to implement the new minimum wage as reason for embarking on the industrial action.

National President of COEASU, Nuhu Ogirima, in a statement in Abuja on Wednesday, decried the federal government’s insensitivity to Nigerian workers’ welfare and the pathetic plight of colleges of education.

He explained that the union joined the strike because it had become evident that both the federal and state governments were not ready to solve the challenges faced by colleges of education in the country.

Mr Ogirima said: “While the union strives to stimulate her members towards re-dedicating themselves to the selfless service of  humanity, notwithstanding  the  conditions  of  the  work-place  and  lingering work related challenges,  it  has  become  evident  that dialogue  and diplomacy  are  alien  to government’s  lexicon  of  labour  engagement, if  any,  for neither  the Federal  nor  State Governments  is  ready  to  meaningfully  solve the myriad of challenges besetting the COEs.

“The Union is quite perturbed because of the grave implication of the foregoing evident neglect on the real training and development practices relating to basic education advancements in the country, since the colleges of education system provide the manpower needs for the foundation level of education, suffices to state that a good foundation is the basis of a sound edifice.

“The refusal of the respective governments and various authorities to expeditiously address the issues would be sure recipe for the union to invoke measures that would impede the smooth running of the entire colleges of education system. Ultimately, the peaceful and congenial atmosphere for  which  the  colleges  of education  have  been  known  would  be difficult  to guarantee.”

He noted that while the organised labour had cause to support the anti-corruption fight of the present administration, government has refused to reciprocate the patriotic understanding by choosing to renege on the much-touted minimum wage review.

According to him, as an affiliate of NLC, COEASU had no choice besides the call for strike by the leadership of the labour union, adding that it is expedient to also invoke their rights “to take further action against the crass insensitivity of government, at both State and Federal levels, to the plight of the Colleges of Education.”