Democratic Socialist Movement

For Struggle, Solidarity and Socialism in Nigeria

By - DSM



For Immediate Payment of Workers’ Salaries and Re-opening of the University

Campaign for Democratic and Workers’ Rights (CDWR) condemns in its entirety the attack on Osun State indigenes working at Ladoke Akintola University of Technology (LAUTECH), Ogbomoso, Oyo State; a University jointly owned by the governments of Oyo and Osun States.

The attack carried out by hoodlums allegedly sponsored by the Ogbomoso indigenes was as a result of the inability of the University to pay salaries of its workers for more than six months running due to the default in payment of subventions to the University by the two states. Osun and Oyo States are said to owe 14 months and 8 months respectively. Apart from the issue of default in payment of subventions, some groups from Oyo States have pushed for the sole ownership of the institution by Oyo state government.

The attack on the workers of the University from Osun State is uncalled for and totally unjustified as workers of the University from both states and any other state are victims of unpaid salaries. The inability of the Osun State government to fulfil its financial obligations to the University has nothing to do with Osun State indigenes working in the University but due to financial mismanagement by Osun State government. It is on record that both states have not only failed in the payment of salaries to workers of LAUTECH but to all civil and public servants in their respective states.

We appeal to workers of the LAUTECH not to allow politicians or any group to divide them along ethnic politics as the University is owned by the public and funded with the taxpayers’ money. We call on academic staff, non-academic staff and students of the University to intensify their struggles for the payments of salaries, re-opening of the university and provisions of adequate infrastructures in the University by embarking on public protest and rallies to force the two states to meet their demands. We equally called on Nigeria Labour Congress (NLC) in both states to declare 48-hour solidarity strike and protest, in the first instance, with the striking workers of LAUTECH.

On the joint ownership of the University, we call on the Osun State government to conduct a referendum to determine the desirability or otherwise of the continued joint ownership of LAUTECH with the Oyo State given that the state already has a state University. However, whatever may be the outcome of the referendum, the rights of the indigenes of Osun State or any worker in LAUTECH to remain as workers in the University must not be violated. In other words, no worker should lose his or her job in the event Osun State decides to pull out of the University.

To effectively manage the University financial resources, we call for democratization of all decision making bodies with elected representatives of staffs (teaching and non-teaching) and students in all organs of the University. We equally call on NLC, TUC, ASUU, NASU and other trade unions to begin the process of building a democratic political alternative with socialist agenda as a panacea to end vicious political and economic attacks on democratic rights of workers and the poor masses.

Chinedu Bosah
Publicity Secretary, CDWR