The Joint Action Committee for Trade Unions (JACTU), Ebonyi College of Education, Ikwo chapter, has issued a 14-day ultimatum to the management of the institution to meet their demands or face industrial action.

JACTU issued the ultimatum after the respective unions convened their congresses on May 7 to review issues of staff welfare that had earlier led to industrial action on April 3, 2015.

The unions articulated their demands in a 10-point communiqué signed by chairmen of the industrial unions under JACTU and made available to newsmen on Wednesday in Abakaliki.

The unions want the school management to take practical steps to address all contending issues in order to prevent a total shutdown of the institution.

The unions among other things want the authorities to address the continued shortfall in staff salaries since November 2015, non-implementation of annual increments since 2015, non-implementation of financial benefits of promotions since 2014.

JACTU is also protesting non-payment of arrears of 37 per cent of CONPASS, and CONTEDISS approved salary structures since 2011 and other outstanding arrears.

Other issues in contention are non-payment of four months outstanding salaries of 15 recalled lecturers, and their teaching practice allowances, the inability of Ebonyi Government and Governing Council to gazette the college.

Other demands listed by the unions included the inability of the college to provide staff conditions of service, non-payment of terminal benefits to dead and retired staff among others.

The unions threatened to commence a warning strike from May 21, if nothing concrete was done to address the demands.

The unions that makeup JACTU are Colleges of Education Academic Staff Union (COEASU11), Senior Staff Union of Colleges of Education (SSUCON) and Non-Academic Staff Union (NASU).

All the chairmen of the three unions signed the communiqué.

Greg Esheya signed for COEASU, Eugene Onu for SSUCON and Chinenye Onuenyim for NASU.

The unions recalled that the April 14, 2015 strike was suspended following appeals by the college management and a promise to positively address all contending issues.

“Unfortunately, none of the issues has been given attention, rather the working conditions of staff continued to worsen.

“Congresses thus observe with utmost pain and regret the intolerable conditions that staff of the college have been subjected to in the last three years with complete negligence of their welfare.’’

JACTU decried the apparent unwillingness of the college management to meaningfully address the issues of grave concern to the survival of the college of education system in the state.

Source: Independent

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