The Senior Staff Association of Nigerian Universities (SSANU) Nnamdi Azikiwe University chapter has said it will disrupt the institution’s matriculation ceremony slated for February 10 over unpaid allowances.
The union said on Friday that the proposed action would draw attention to the insensitivity of the institution’s management to the plight of non-teaching staff of the university, whose allowances were withheld.
The SSANU members had earlier held a meeting followed with chanting of solidarity songs demanding the authorities address cases of marginalisation against them.
They claimed non-teaching staff were being treated as slaves and second class citizens.
Chairman of the union, Mrs Njideka Nwangwu who addressed newsmen accused the management of withholding their hazard allowance on the grounds they were not entitled to such benefits.
Nwangwu said the treatment meted to such staff was not fair as non teaching staff were bona-fide employees who deserved all rights and privileges as others.
She said two of the affected staff had gone blind because of the hazards associated with their office in spite of the fact that the Federal Government had released their hazard allowances to the university.
She said the university management was just sitting on their hazard allowances.
Nwangwu who is also the chairman of Joint Action Committee of NAT, NASU and SSANU, noted that the national body of the union made it clear that the non-teaching staff of Nigerian universities must be given their rightful position in the nation’s university system.
Dr. Emmanuel Ojukwu, Public Relations Officer of the institution said it was not right for the striking workers to disrupt the matriculation ceremony scheduled to hold tomorrow.
Ojukwu said the complaints and grievances were being looked into and appealed to them to remain calm.
Ojukwu noted that the non-teaching staff had not come to work since December last year yet they got their salaries regularly pointing out that the matriculation ceremony was an academic exercise and ASUU was not on strike.