Academic activities in government-owned tertiary institutions in Plateau State may be grounded from Friday following a wage dispute between the lecturers and the state government.
The teachers, under the Joint Unions of Plateau State-owned Tertiary Institutions, resolved to embark on the industrial action while addressing reporters in Jos on Monday.
The state government, the lecturers said, had remained insensitive to their welfare.
Chairman of JUPTI, comprising six tertiary institutions in the state, Mr. Victor Dawurung, said all entreaties, including correspondence to the state government fell on deaf ears.
The teachers’ grouse, he said, included the non-payment of their three months salaries as well as the 27 months arrears of the new salary structure, and the merger of the College of Arts, Science and Technology, Kurgwi with the state university in Bokkos.
He noted that due to poor remuneration in the state, no fewer than 150 of their members had left the service for greener pastures.
Dawurung said, “We are worried that while we are trying to address pending issues between us and government, the governor, Jonah Jang, went ahead to merge the college with the university.
“We also view the merger as government’s plan to reduce the workforce of the institutions and to lay off our members. We are appealing to government to have a second thought and respect these institutions.’’
Dawurung, who frowned on the declining education standard in the state, also queried the alleged tampering with the new salary structure by the state government.
He added, “We call on government to resolve these lingering issues. We believe that the governor has the capacity to meet our demands and we believe that he will do so.”