AAU teachers call off 66 day strike

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Over two months after they embarked on a strike, teachers at Ambrose Alli University (AAU) on Tuesday announced the suspension of the strike.

A joint statement in Ekpoma by the local chairman of Academic Staff Union of Universities (ASUU), Professor Monday Igbafen and the secretary, Dr Anthony Aizebioje-Coker and made available to journalists in Benin explained that the suspensqion of the 66-day old strike action was as a result of a Memorandum of Action (MoA) between the university administration and the union after several engagements.

The lecturers downed tools on March 25 over unpaid salaries for several months and more than one year unpaid check-off dues and other sundry deductions from salaries in the institution.

Igbafen and Aizebioje-Coker disclosed that at a meeting of Monday, May 31, 2021, where the MoA was received and discussed, the congress of the university resolved to accept the said MoA and subsequently suspended its strike action, effective May 31, 2021.

They noted, “Consequent on the above, the union directed its members to return to work without further delay.”

Among other details of the MoA, they disclosed that the government will meet its obligation of paying the first tranche of the outstanding emoluments to the staff of the university within the week.

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The statement added, “The first tranche constitutes a minimum of two months full (gross) salaries (January and February, 2021) as well as two months of outstanding check-off dues and other sundry deductions (April and May, 2020).That the first tranche be paid in the first week of June, 2021.

“The remaining emolument (salaries, check-off dues and other sundry deductions) shall be paid on or before the 30th of June 2021. No member of the union will be victimized because of the strike action.”

While advising the government against breaching of the said MoA in the interest of sustained industrial peace in the institution, the chairman and the scribe insisted that if the conditions are breached within the specified period, the strike action shall resume without notice.

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