- A new agitation for lecturers to be paid their salaries in full following a recent outburst with the federal government
- Lecturers under the umbrella of ASUU were said to have received half their salary for October
- Senator Ali Ndume, in a furious reaction, said it was unjust for lecturers to be treated in such a manner
Senator Ali Ndume is making a case for the Academic Staff Union of Universities (ASUU) over the continuous issue of gratuity and other demands they have tabled before the federal government.
The lawmaker representing Borno-South has called on the government to slash lawmakers’ wages in two to meet the union’s demands.
As reported by TheCable, the pragmatic lawmaker made this submission on Thursday, November 10, stating that it will suit the circumstances of things and bring about harmony if such steps are taken in earnest.
He called for the formation of a committee that will help see to the process and make it a reality and put an end to the decade-long tradition of industrial actions by the academic union.
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The Senator said:
“Even if it means that the national assembly will reduce sitting allowances or be paid on casual allowances basis whenever they sit at the lower and upper chambers, by cutting the recurrent expenditure in the budget of the federal lawmakers to settle the ASUU arrears, let it be. It will be in the overall national interest of Nigerians.”
"Half salary payment to lecturers wrong" - Senator Ndume
Senator Ndume kicked against the federal government’s decision to slash lecturers’ salaries despite going on a legitimate strike in agitation for their rights.
“Civil servants who worked from home during the COVID-19 pandemic were paid their full salaries and allowances monthly.
“So, why will the federal government cut university lecturers’ salaries because they went on legitimate strike? Constitutionally, they are fighting for their privileges.”
The Senator also noted that the work of lecturers could be more demanding than the legislatures.
He said the legislature does not do much work but gets paid in full for doing nothing compared to lecturers.
Senator Ndume said:
“As a matter of priority and as public servants in the legislative chambers, we don’t work; so why don’t you just give us half salary and then pay ASUU.”
He stated that there was nothing wrong if N1trillion was budgeted for the educational system to put an end to the lingering crisis in the educational system.
“We are budgeting 20.5 trillion for 2023, I don’t see any reason why the government will not budget one trillion to address the lingering challenges of the education sector including ASUU strikes,” Senator Ndume said.
ASUU half salary: Gbajabiamila reveals next line of action
According to him, President Buhari was being awaited to approved the proposal of payment presented to him.
However, he said that 2023 Appropriations Bill includes N170 billion to provide a level of increment in the welfare package of university lecturers.