Why We Are On Strike , Says COEASU
The Colleges of Education Academic Staff Union (COEASU) said the union was empowered by her National Executive Council (NEC) meeting of 10th June 2022 in Asaba, the Delta State Capital.
Here is the communique issued at the end of the meeting
The National Executive Council (NEC) of the Colleges of Education Academic Staff Union (COEASU) met at Federal College of Education (Technical), Asaba, Delta State on Friday, 10th June, 2022 to assess the level of responsible action by the Federal Government and decide the way forward upon the lapse of 21-day ultimatum issued by the Union on the lingering issues of industrial concern.
The meeting, which was attended by 51 Chapters comprising of 111 delegates including former Presidents and members of the National Officers’ Council (NOC), resolved as follows after extensive deliberations:
I. STATUS OF FESTERING ISSUES
NEC received with utter disappointment the continued inaction of Government on lingering issues in spite of the Union’s lengthy perseverance and uncommon disposition towards alternative dispute resolution. It was considered more worrisome that the FG has failed to reciprocate the patience of COEASU which was underpinned by concern for the plight of the students and the system since December 5th 2018, when the last strike action was suspended. After extensive deliberations and dispassionate assessment of the series of engagements of National Officers’ Council with Government officials and critical stakeholders, NOC, while appreciating these efforts and promising disposition of relevant authorities including the Honourable Minister of Education, resolved that only desired results through tangible action by Government would have been enough to prevent industrial action as the Union’s ultimatum lapsed on Monday, 6th June, 2022. Specifically, NEC condemned non-resolution of the following lingering issues:
1. Failure of FG to constitute its own Team and commence renegotiation of FGN-COEASU 2010 Agreement in spite of all entreaties of the Union.
2. Non-release of N15billion approved out of the N456,599,691,914.18Billion revitalization fund recommended for both Federal and State Colleges of Education contrary to repeated promises of the FG.
3. Non – implementation of 2014 Needs assessment report in Colleges of Education
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4. Non – payment of outstanding promotion arrears from 2016 to date
5. Non – payment of responsibility allowance to Librarian in Colleges of Education
6. Non – implementation of the consequential effect of the implementation of CONTISS15 on Lower Cadre(a.k.a. Migration) since 2018
7. Poor Funding of Colleges of Education and poor conditions across State-owned Colleges of Education especially in Ogun, Kwara, Abia, Kogi, Kaduna, Zamfara, Yobe, Oyo, Benue, Edo and Ebonyi States.
8. Federal Government’s recalcitrant insistence on IPPIS against more reliable alternative of UTAS that captured the peculiarity of tertiary institutions.
9. Refusal of FG to mainstream demonstration school staff in the payroll of the Colleges
NEC unanimously resolved that:
1. The total strike action suspended by the Union in December 2018 be resumed immediately for four weeks in the first instance. NEC shall reconvene after the four weeks strike action to re-assess the level of Government’s commitment on the issues for appropriate decision on way forward thenceforth.
2. Every Chapter Congress across the federation should convene on Tuesday, 14th June, 2022 to adequately inform the Congress on the commencement of the strike action due the festering issues and the status of inaction leading to the industrial action.
3. Leadership of the Union at all levels (National, Zonal and Chapter) should embark on emphatic media campaign towards seamless public awareness on the issues leading to the strike action.
4. The strike action shall be total and all members of the academic staff in all Colleges of Education (both Federal and State) must withdraw from all statutory duties without exemption.
5. All State-owned Colleges already on industrial action to press home local demands should impress on their respective Managements that the local strike shall continue in the unexpected event that their local issues remain unresolved by the end of the nation wide strike.
6. Vice Presidents/Zonal Coordinators shall monitor the compliance of Chapters in their respective Zones while defaulting Chapters shall be prevented from enjoying the gains of the struggle and earn themselves other sanctions as NEC shall deem applicable based on normal Union regulations pertaining to Collective Bargaining.
Dr. Smart Olugbeko, President Dr. Ahmed Lawan Bazza