Federal University of Technology Owerri (FUTO) and the Academic Staff Union of Universities (ASUU) have urged the federal government to pay the members' outstanding salary for the previous seven months.
ASUU urged the government to immediately cease using hunger as a weapon to force academics into submission and to pay their salaries that have been withheld for more than seven months.
Strikes are a legal means of advancing the demands of home workers throughout the world.
Following a protest march by the Union, its chairman, Dr. Chinedu Ihejirika, emphasized the demand in a communique that he co-signed with its secretary, Dr. Etienne Chinakwe, and made accessible to newsmen in Owerri on Thursday.
Ihejirika expressed the union's opposition to the “casualization of academics” by pro-rata paying half salary to its members starting in October 2022.
He asserted that despite the Union's seven-month walkout, its members still earned their salaries and that the strike was just a valid means of bringing attention to the Union's requests and grievances.
He believed that a nation's intellectuals determine its fate, so it was important to protect the future of outstanding Nigerian youngsters as well as the country as a whole by giving the Union's requests swift attention.
“We demand that the government uphold its commitments, end the anti-labor No Work, No Pay policy, and pay university teaching staff through the first-ever domestic payment system, the University Transparency and Accountability System (UTAS).”
Vice Chancellor of the University Prof. Nnenna Oti addressed the academics after hosting the Union in her office and reiterating her support for the Union and its “legitimate requests.”
Professor Godfrey Nwandikom, the university's Deputy Vice-Chancellor for Academics, spoke on behalf of Oti and promised that the demands will be forwarded to the proper people.
Members of the union, according to gospelcable, sang songs of unity while carrying signs that read, among other things, “We say no to casualization and victimization of academics,” “ASUU is fighting for the survival of Nigerian Universities,” and “Pay us our pay arrears.”
For the period from March to September 2022, when the union's strike action halted academic operations at institutions across the nation, members have not yet received their salaries.