The Acting Rector of Federal Polytechnic Auchi, Edo State, Dr. Jafaru Buraimah, Saturday, appealed to the striking unions to have a rethink in the best interest of the institution.
He made the plea while briefing journalists in Auchi, Etsako West Local Government Area of the state, over the impasse between the management of the institution and the unions.
It would be recalled that the Academic Staff Union of Polytechnic (ASUP), Senior Staff Association of Nigerian Polytechnics (SSANIP) and Non-Academic Staff Union of Polytechnics (NASUP), had embarked on an indefinate strike on February 6, over failure of institution’s management to enroll members on “CONTISS 15 Migration Salary Structure for Level 11 downward, promotion arrears and alledged indebetdeness of N1.8bn owed the unions.
“I am appealing to them that they should go and resume their officials duties so that the system can function normally.
“I dont think it is proper for the polytechnic primary school and secondary school to be locked up, students of the polytechnic are denied their lectures.
“I dont think it is proper, so i appeal to the workers, the unions in the polytechnic to please call off the strike and let academic activities resume normally,” Buraimah said.
According to him, the management could no longer fund the CONTISS 15 Migration salaries for level 11 downward, adding that it does not have cash backing by the Federal Government.
He said that the management had been using its internally generated revenue to pay workers’ salaries, adding that the attitude was no longer sustainable.
“On the issue of CONTISS 15 Migration for level 11 downward, management migrated staffs of grade level 11 downward, and management started payment of their CONTISS 15 migration from internally generated revenue.
“The use of the internal genarated reveune for CONTISS 15 Migration is what led to the accumulation of management indebtedness to the unions,” he said.
Buraimah said that the school management was indebted to tune of N868.7m to the unions, adding that the alledged cliam of N1.8 bn by the union was untrue.
“I have decided to address you this morning and to correct the misinformation that have been spread around about the true position of Auchi polytechnic.
“For the purpose of clarity and for the need of information on the level of Auchi poly management indebtedness to the union and association of Auchi polytechnic, i hereby announce that the total accumulated indebtdeness is N868.7million and not billion.
“And this money does not just accumulated within my one year of administration, the accumulation started from the past administration, and offcourse my administration added to it,” he said.
The Acting Rector disclosed that the institution’s management had set up a committee to workout the modalities of the gradual refund of the total sum of money to the union and association on campus.
He added the management was working in line with the Federal Government to ensure that the promotion arrears for staff of the institution were paid.
“Promotion arrears of 2013, 2014, 2015 and 2016 i hereby announce that this are issues that are being address by the Federal Government and once they are resolve, decision are pass down for implementation, then we will implement,” he said.