By Jonathan Ugbal
Activities at the College of Health Technology in Calabar, the Cross River State capital have halted over a week long industrial action embarked upon by two powerful unions in the institution.
The Academic Staff Union of Polytechnics (ASUP) and the Senior Staff Association of Nigerian Polytechnics (SSANIP) are protesting the suspension of the CONPCASS and CONTEDISS salary structures by the Cross River State Government.
The unions while addressing the press, said the salary structures were “approved by the National Salaries, Income and Wages Commission in 2010 and implemented in 2011 for all Polytechnics, Monotechnics and Colleges of Education in Nigeria.”
The “Cross River State College of Health Technology, Calabar, was denied benefit for seven years,” before the State granted approval for implementation of the structure in September 2018, the unions said.
The unions said the college even “conceded arrears as part of its sacrifice and contributions for the support and promotion of this (Ben Ayade-led) administration.”
The approval of the salary structure by the State was part of the conditions to ensure the College gets accreditation by its regulating body, the National Board for technical Education which according to the Union, declaring an indefinite strike after exhausting other options in March 2020.
“That action was quickly suspended in April on humanitarian grounds to join force with the State and Federal Government to fight COVID_19 by producing and distributing freely, nose masks, alcohol based hand sanitizers and hand washing stations,” the unions said.
They also prepared student’s for “internal and professional examinations,” the unions said.
The unions want arrears paid from November 2019 and a full reinstatement of the salary structures.
The action is expected to last till Sunday, November 29, 2020 after which the unions will agree on the next line of action if Government fails to meet their demands.
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