Teachers from the Federal College of Education (Technical), Umunze, Anambra State, have protested over six years of unpaid allowances.
They also warned the institution’s provost and management to stop intimidating their members about the development.
The Chairman of the FCET Umunze Branch of the Colleges of Education Academic Staff Union (COEASU), Dr. Churchill Okonkwo, led the protest.
Nigerian Tribune concluded that about a week ago, teachers had declared a three-week warning strike against the management of the college, asking parents to withdraw their children and departments from the college in their own interest.
But the college management in a quick response refuted the COEASU strike, describing it as fake news, stating: “Some online reports had quoted the chairman, COEASU, FCET Umunze, Dr. Churchill Okonkwo, who asked parents to return their children. are withdrawing from the college because the teachers in the institution had started a 21-day warning strike.”
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The college’s provost, Dr. Tessy Okoli, warned students not to be misled by the false report of the strike, which she said was intended to cause panic and unrest among students, and advised journalists to always verify reports to avoid misleading the public, noting that any student who would be absent from school during the exam period would be their own fault.
But on Monday, COEASU insisted that college teachers go on strike and warned the provost and management to stop intimidating them and deceiving the public with lies.
COEASU President Okonkwo said: “As a Union, we are all aware of the sacrifices we have made as a body to continue our duties in the College, despite the neglect of our welfare packages by management, which is currently so is familiar with divide and conquer antics rather than dealing with the problems that have arisen.
“We are also aware that if it wasn’t COEASU who ventured to the source for N1m to sponsor Agajelu to Abuja to demand our well-being, the management wouldn’t have cared that we owed the TETFUND intervention since 2016, nor were they sympathetic to the fact that Education The Mobilization of Practice (TP) had not been paid since 2018 and the same nonchalance has also heeded our demands for fee.
“It means that our meager salaries are in charge of paying for our transportation to oversee the practice exercises since 2016, while management always collects their DTA every time they travel or leave the university environment for official duties.
“They always think that justice can be overruled by injustice, and that’s quite unfair. At our Congress on Tuesday, August 23, 2022, the Provost was given a fair chance to appeal to us and make promises postponing the strike, but instead of doing so, she resorted to threat.
“Our college has become a laughing stock for other colleges in the areas of well-being, environment and governance of our staff. We are the dirtiest and most unkempt college in Nigeria with overgrown grass everywhere. No clean sanitary facilities, which means that teachers and students mainly enjoy themselves in the heavily overgrown grass.
“Before this new management, teachers were assigned biros, files and markers, but now we are going to spend our money to buy these. Previously, college generators powered the whole school and departments, but now every school and department has to buy their generator and also fuel it to make output; Previously, accreditation was fully sponsored by the College, but the last accreditation HODs and Deans were given paltry amounts to run around for accreditation and most of them still owe what they spent. This is something that other sister colleges do with ease and we ask; is our college made different from other colleges in Nigeria?
The teachers therefore decided: “That all staff who participate in an exam will be penalized in the Union way. That COEASU Exco will intensify monitoring exercises to ensure full compliance. That any staff member who has been harassed or harassed by senior staff must quickly report to the Exc
The teachers warned management not to keep the students in college all the time if there was no academic work going on, describing it as punishment and poor service to parents, adding: “They can’t let the students go to college. keep with lies when such students are not engaged in academic activities.Remember that a vain mind is the workshop of a devil.”