Academic activities in LAUTECH face false start.
GOING by the latest calendar released by management and governing council of Ladoke Akintola University of Technology (LAUTECH), Ogbomoso, students of the institution are scheduled to commence full academic activities on Tuesday.
However, there are fears of a false start to the resumption order going by the stance of the institution’s chapter of the Academic Staff Union of Universities (ASUU) and Joint Action Committee (JAC) not to resume until they get their salary alerts.
The unions had met with the governing council of the institution on September 18, 2017, with the governing council expressing assurance that the owner two state governors would soon fulfill its promise to each pay three months takeoff grants into the institution’s account.
At that meeting, the unions had also asked the owner state governments to disclose a Memorandum of Action on meeting their demands to include payment of salary and pension arrears, sustainability of funding, promotion arrears, earned arrears and health insurance.
In their separate comments, Chairman, ASUU, LAUTECH, Dr Biodun Olaniran and his JAC counterpart, Mr Aleshinloye Abimbola, urged the two owner state governments of Oyo and Osun, to urgently speak on the extent to which they would meet their demands.
According to them, this would help rescue the fate of agonizing staff and staff, especially noting that many of the best staff of LAUTECH, had emigrated the institution since the unending crisis commenced.
Speaking, Olaniran said, “The called us for a meeting on Monday, September 18, and they said the school was yet to get the money promised by the government. We said we waited until the money is released and received by the university. Till today, we wait on the university to call us back.”
“Our agitation is not solely on salary. How will someone work for 35 years and not have any take home? They have a list of our demands. They should tell us the demands that they can meet. The governing council and management should tell us what they can do on each of the demands. What we want is a memorandum of action on each of the demands. I must confess that many of our best hands have left LAUTECH.”
Speaking in the same light, JAC Chairman, Abimbola decried that the future of the students continued to the jeopardized while staff found it difficult to fend for themselves and their families.
“The government should put something on the table then we negotiate. The students are losing about two years; we have lost over one year. Our agitation is not only based on salary payment. We are talking about funding, sustainability of the funding, promotion arrears, earned arrears, health insurance, pension, and arrears. Public institutions must be funded by the government.”
“They said the owner states will give us money, three months each. Where is the money? About 15 of us have died, while 10 have terminal diseases. The government should do the needful because of the future of the school, lives of the students. We appeal to the two state governors to do the needful.”
“They have not called us for another meeting. They can only call us when the government gives out money. Up till now, we have not received anything. They asked the students to resume not us. They should think of the students. We have not seen anything from the two state governments,” Aleshinloye said.
Meanwhile, Public Relations Officer, LAUTECH, Mr Lekan Fadeyi has expressed the belief that staffs will get their salaries in due course as the owner state government’s credit the institution’s account.
He also asserted optimism that academic activities will resume on Tuesday.
The school is expected to resume lectures today, by the special grace of God. The agreement is that the two owner states will drop money into the university’s account and this will be disbursed to individual staff’s account.”
“I am sure that even JAAC and ASUU will believe that after dropping into school processes, it will take some processes before it gets into individual account of staffs,” Fadeyi said.