By JOAN NWAGWU
ABUJA- The Senior Staff Association of Nigerian Universities (SSANU) has warned the Prof. Nimi-Briggs Committee that it will not accept salary disparity in university system.
The News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) reports that the Briggs committee is renegotiating a 2009 agreement between university lecturers and the Federal Government.
SSANU National President, Mr Mohammed Ibrahim, disclosed his association’s stand in a statement he issued on Tuesday in Abuja.
He said that the association would take any legal action to ensure that it would not happen.
According to him, SSANU has read in the media that there is a proposal for the review of salary for university staff.
“This is with a differential of teaching staff taking between 108 to 180 per cent and an unreasonable 10 per cent for non-teaching staff.
“We are shocked to read that the Nimi Briggs Committee has submitted a report to the government while we only met with them twice.
“To say the least, SSANU is not happy with the pace of work in that committee.
“While we only met twice with them, we are aware that they have met with the teaching staff not fewer than 10 times,’’ he said.
Ibrahim said that they were surprised how the so-called percentage was allocated to non- teaching staff.
He said that SSANU leadership had not the opportunity to discuss salary review with the committee as it (committee) had not gotten the approval of their principal to discuss that.
“We are seriously shocked and taken aback by the media report that a certain miserable, unacceptable percentage was recommended for non-teaching staff.
“We advise that that committee should as a matter of urgency, conclude renegotiation with us, ‘’he said.
Ibrahim called on the committee to immediately reconvene to conclude the assignment given to it by discussing frankly and truthfully the 2009 renegotiation document presented to it.
He added that the non-teaching staff would not take it lightly any attempt to have different payment table for staff.
“The university system is a universal system comprising two broad categories of staff, the teaching and the non-teaching staff and the salary consideration has always been the same, except for allowances.
“Any attempt to give preferential treatment to any group will not only be unfair but unjust and inhumane.
“While the teaching staff is busy imparting knowledge to the students, the non-teaching staff has the responsibility of molding the character of students through the provision of a conducive and secure atmosphere,“ he said.
Ibrahim,said the teaching and non-teaching staff play complementary roles in the university.
“There is no university community that can operate successfully without the two categories of staff, “ he said.
Ibrahim commended President Muhammadu Buhari for his intervention in the ongoing strike embarked upon by ASUU. (NAN)