Segun Awofadeji in Bauchi
The Joint Action Committee (JAC) of the academic and non-academic staff unions of Bauchi State Tertiary institutions has decried poor working conditions by its members necessitated by the non-implementation of promotions, yearly increments, among others.
In a statement, the Chairman of JAC, Abdulkadir Mohammed, lamented that there are a lot of issues that have been bedevilling the performance of his members in all the state-owned tertiary institutions.
The chairman described the situation as unfortunate, noting that they have not been enjoying some of their entitlements for so long, such as promotion implementation, yearly increment, and consequential adjustment.
“It is also worrisome that some of our members are persistently omitted in the payroll despite the genuineness of their appointments and the verifications they had undergone without indictment,” he stated.
The JAC chairman, who said a series of observations had been forwarded on their cases to appropriate authorities but to no avail, expressed the belief that most of the problems are compounded by some ‘invisible consultants.”
He described the action of such consultants as a move against the initial good intention of Governor Bala Mohammed towards cleansing ghost workers from the state payroll without jeopardizing any genuine civil servant.
“It is evident that these ill-motive consultants who are nothing short of fault-finders are busy witch-hunting the workers in Bauchi state, thereby always searching and devising the means of pushing our members off the payroll or maintaining those removed for one plausible and unjustifiable excuse,” added the JAC chairman.
The JAC urged the government to be aware that their promotion in the institutions was not tied to a waiting period but involved conference presentations, journal publications, chapter publications, book publications, registration with professional bodies, and community development.
The union cautioned that with the deliberate frustration of the staff, there was no doubt that tertiary institutions would soon begin to lose accreditation of some courses.
The chairman, who noted that JAC had written a series of letters of complaint, pointed out that the governor must have been blocked from having first-hand information regarding their plights.
The JAC requested that its members owed January to March 2022 salaries be paid immediately. It also urged the government to settle those owed salaries from 2019 to December 2021.
The union called for immediate resumption of promotion implementation, and annual increments abruptly stopped without any official communication for more than two years.
“The JAC holds strong objection to the untimely imposition of our staff into the illusionary contributory pension scheme, a venture that is being avoided by some federal institutions due to untold hardships caused on workers,” it said.
The JAC, while rejecting the proposed deductions for the contributory health scheme otherwise called BASHCMA, also said in the interest of the aggrieved workers, the consultants in charge of salary administration in Bauchi should be disengaged.