Ekiadolor Lecturers Protest 11 Months Unpaid Salaries

By Ikhili Ebalu, Benin City

Members of Academic Union and pensioners, College of Education, now Tayo Akpata University Ekiadolor, Edo State have embarked on protest to demand their eleven months unpaid salary by the state government 

 The angry workers, dressed in black attires marched straight to the Government House  in their hundreds, vowing  to continue the protest  until government attend to their demands

 President, College of Education Academic Union, COASU, Comrade Fred Omonuwa, said they won't be blackmailed on the altar of politics for demanding for their rights.

" For sometime now we have been having issues of 11 months unpaid salaries. We have tried to meet with the governor when the head of service came to speak with us to sheath our sword. We thought that within two weeks our salaries will be paid but they never listened to us"

"Congress met and decided to come out in peaceful protest to demand for our hard earn salaries including pension and gratuities.  We spent couple of hours at Government House nobody came out to address us. We believe that a labourer is worthy of his pay and we are going to continue on this path untill our demands are met.

Omonuwa described as cheap blackmail the political connotation accorded the protest by the state government " When they came to our school to placate us not to protest we were not being sponsored. It is just blackmail. 

But the state government in a swift reaction said the protest was politically motivated by politicians who are hell-bent on derailing development in the state.

Commissioner for Education, Hon. Jimoh Ijegbai who denied the protesters  claims  said besides the arrears owed by previous government,  workers in the institution are being paid even while they were not working.

He traced the genesis of the agitation by the workers to the policies of former Edo State Governor, Comrade Adams Oshiomhole, who converted the college to Tayo Akpata University without a clear-cut direction on managing the interest of the workers

“In 2016, the then Governor, Comrade Adams Oshiomhole announced that the College of Education, Ekiadolor was being phased out and would then be Tayo Akpata University, Ekiadolor.
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