UFOMBA UZUEGBU, Asst News Editor
Non-Academic Staff Union of Educational and Associated Institutions (NASU) has called on the Federal Government to work towards the attainment of the allocation of 26 per cent national budget to education as recommended by the United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization (UNESCO).
NASU said the education sector was a key instrument to promote sustainable development.
Recalling in particular the responsibility of the states for the provision of education in fulfilment of Article 13, paragraph 1(c), of the UNESCO International Covenant on Economic, Social and Cultural Rights (1966), NASU at its regular meeting at the Banquet Hall, Kwara Hotels, Ilorin, Kwara State warned that lack of proper funding of the education sector in the past in the country represents a serious cost not just to the young people themselves, but also to their families and the nation’s economy.
NASU’s National President, Ladi Iliya who gave the warning said:” We call on the Federal Government to work progressively towards the attainment of the 26per cent UNESCO prescribed budgetary allocation to the education sector as more funding for the sector is key instrument to promote sustainable development.
“We are disturbed that the government is yet to address the demands ten weeks after the workers had suspended the strike”, she added
He noted that alleged inaction of the government had given management of some polytechnics, the excuse not to pay the workers their due entitlement and called on the government to address the demands without further delay.
“We are using this opportunity to call on the Hon. Minister of Education to accelerate action in resolving the issues that provoked the strike actions, taking into consideration, the fact that the strikes were suspended; with a view to giving the government a 90-day moratorium to enable it resolve the issues involved”
Iliya said it was embarrassing to note that in the polytechnics where CONTISS 15 migration has been implemented, some Management have stopped the payment under the pretext that the Federal Government has not provided the needed funds for its implementation .
He said: “NASU members are disturbed by this retrogressive action of government. It is therefore imperative for government to act speedily in order to avert the resumption of the suspended strike”
Also, NASU’s General Secretary, Comrade Peters Adeyemi, while thanking the federal government for the release of N30billion to federal universities for the payment of the first tranch of earned allowances, urged the government to release funds for payment of the balance of the allowance.
He also enjoined state governments that are yet to yield to the demand of the NASU for payment of Peculiar Allowance to its members in their services to do so while cautioning all state governments against reducing salaries being paid to workers under the guise of inadequate resources.
According to Adeyemi, while the NEC-in-Session of NASU commended President Goodluck Jonathan for showing commitment to the funding of the education sector through steady increase in the budgetary allocation to the sector in recent times, the Session further appealed to Government to release the balance of the intervention fund for the Universities in line with UNESCO guidelines