The seven-week-old industrial action by workers in the Akwa Ibom State University, Ikot Akpaden, in Mkpat Enin Local Government Area of Akwa Ibom State has been called off on Wednesday, June 9, 2021.
The development followed an agreement reached between the state government and the four labour unions of the university, comprising of Academic Staff of Universities, Senior Staff Association of Nigerian Universities, the National Association of Technologists, and the Non-Academic Staff Union of Educational and Associated Institutions.
The Unions had since April 19, 2021, embarked on an indefinite strike over 25 per cent unpaid salary arrears, unpaid leave allowance, and payment of salaries on a percentage basis.
A statement suspending the strike was issued at the end of a meeting on Monday by the Akwa Ibom Assembly House Committee on Education led by Hon. Godwin Ekpo, with the management of AKSU led by the VC Prof. Nse Essien, Heads of the four labour unions led by Dr Ime Okop, and the Commissioner for Education, Mr. Idongesit Etiebet.
According to the statement issued to journalists on Wednesday, the stakeholders agreed that the state government should commence the full payment of the workers’ salaries and the payment of the leave allowance.
They also resolved that the state government should pay the 25 per cent salary arrears of 11 months owed to them in tranches and that the payment should be rounded up by December 2021.
The resolutions as contained in the statement read in parts, “The Akwa Ibom State University Staff Unions under the aegis of Joint Action Committee shall on Wednesday, June 9, 2021, suspend the strike.
“The Vice-chancellor of Akwa Ibom State University shall pay to the staff of the University in one voucher the 75 per cent of May 2021 salary, plus the 25 per cent of March 2021 salary already released to the University along with 100 per cent of May 2021 salary not later than Friday, June 11, 2021.
“In June 2021, the Akwa Ibom State Governments shall pay to the staff of the Akwa Ibom State University the first tranche of the 25 per cent salary arrears of 2020 for three months along with 100 per cent of June 2021 salary.
“In August 2021, the government of Akwa Ibom State shall pay to the staff of the AKSU the second tranche of 25 per cent salary arrears of 2020 for three months along with 100 per cent of August 2021 salary.
“In October 2021, the Akwa Ibom State government shall pay the 2020 leave grant to the staff of the Akwa Ibom State University along with 100 per cent October 2021 salary.
“In November 2021, the Akwa Ibom State government shall pay to the staff of AKSU the last tranche of 25 per cent salary arrears of 2020 for the remaining two months along with 100 per cent of November 2021 salary.
“In December 2021 the Akwa Ibom State government shall pay to the staff of AKSU 25 per cent arrears for the months of March and April 2021 along with 100 per cent of December 2021 Salary.”
The statement, however, warned that no person or group should be victimized for involving in the strike action that led to the resolutions.