The workers of the tertiary institutions in Ondo State have cried out over the alleged insensitivity of the state government to their welfare matter.
The workers under the auspices of Joint Action Committee of the Ondo State-owned Tertiary Institutions said they could no longer cope with the hardship they were going through due to the failure of the state governor to improve their welfare as expected.
The JAC-ODSTI comprises the National Association of Academic Technologies, Non-Academic Staff Union, the Senior Staff Association of Nigerian Universities, and the Senior Staff Association of Nigerian Polytechnics from the four tertiary institutions owned by the government – the Adekunle Ajasin University, Akungba-Akoko, the Olusegun Agagu University of Science and Technology, Okitipupa, the University of Medical Sciences, Ondo and the Rufus Giwa Polytechnic, Owo.
The Chairman, JAC-ODSTI, Comrade Tayo Ogungbeni, said the state tertiary institutions in the state had been poorly funded since the inception of the present administration of Governor Rotimi Akeredolu, saying their members were dying as a result of the development.
According to the chairman, some of the challenges being faced by the institutions included monthly subvention, non-implementation of 2009 Federal Government -unions agreements, non-payment of outstanding earned allowances and non-implementation of national minimum wage for members among others.
He said, “The truth must be said, funding of our institutions was better off during the immediate past administration. During this time, grants for capital projects and subventions were released as and when due unlike what we are presently experiencing.
“For instance, it was during the past administration that the unique and gigantic Senate Building at AAUA was built with several roads constructed but all are now things of the past. It is on record that no capital grants have been released to some of the tertiary institutions in Ondo State since 2018.
“It is also on record that instead of increasing the monthly subventions to all the tertiary institutions in the state, the present administration reduced it drastically and this has been causing serious problems for the running of the institutions.
“We are using this opportunity to appeal to all the good people of the state, our Royal Highnesses, our religious leaders, APC leadership at both the state and national levels that their intervention is urgently needed to resolve all the identified problems once and for all.
“If the issues are not resolved on or before the end of the ongoing national strike, we may be forced to declare industrial dispute with the state government and the management of all our tertiary institutions in the state.”