Rufus Giwa Polytechnic Lecturers Open Up On Unpaid 11 Months Salaries

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The Rufus Giwa Polytechnic, Owo, Ondo State, chapter of the Academic Staff Union of Polytechnics (ASUP) has opened up on 11 months of unpaid salaries.

Its Chairman, Comrade Ade Arikawe, told a news conference on the school’s campus, on Tuesday.

Arikawe, disclosed that members could no longer discharge their duties on empty stomachs.

He said irregular payment of salaries had been going on in the school for  seven years and efforts to address the issue had often been fruitless.

Arikawe said: “We have tried as much as possible to discharge our duties even in hunger.

“We have been doing this to suit and please Governor Oluwarotimi Akeredolu, an indigene of Owo, so that his political opponents will not use non-payment of salaries against him.

“We have done enough, however, and we can’t wait any longer, nor endure again.

“The struggle has been on for a long time; for seven years, actually. Without paying our salary arrears, we will not conduct examinations for students.

“The only language we want to hear is that our salary arrears have been paid”.

He said since the beginning of 2023, academic staff of the institution had been paid only February salary and part-payment for March.

Arikawe added that the polytechnic owed more than N6 billion in workers’ salaries, promotion benefits and others.

He added that it was also worrisome that the institution had refused to pay the financial benefits of promotion of staff since 2015.

Arikawe noted that the polytechnic currently suffered huge deficits in infrastructure, equipment and teaching aids.

He traced the perpetual delay in salary payment to continual slashing of government subvention to the polytechnic since the administration of former Governor Olusegun Mimiko.

Arikawe said unpaid salaries had led to untimely deaths, avoidable ill health, broken marriages, humiliation and all manner of unimaginable living conditions by lecturers of the institution.

He said it was unfortunate that the government was claiming to have paid backlogs of salaries owed workers with the fate of the polytechnic’s lecturers being different.

On the planned conversion of the polytechnic to a University, the ASUP Chairman condemned the setting up of a panel to execute the switch without involving ASUP.

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