The Colleges of Education Academic Staff Union, COEASU, the umbrella body of lecturers in the nation’s Colleges of Education, has directed its members nationwide to go to work two days weekly until the Federal Government yields to its demand of a 200 per cent increase in salary.
The announcement was contained in a statement signed by the union’s National President, Dr Smart Olugbeko in Abuja on Wednesday.
Olugbeko said the decision was reached at the COEASU’s extraordinary meeting held on Tuesday, amid the difficulty of its members to get to work as a result of hike in the price of petrol.
He pointed out that the implementation of removal of fuel subsidy by the federal government two months ago had raised the price of a litre of petrol by 250 per cent.
”This worsened the inflationary rate on the cost of transportation, food and other essential commodities and impoverished the Nigerian people.
”Workers, including staff of colleges of education, kept faith with the government and chose to endure the untold hardship thinking it would be only for a while as the government promised to roll out palliative measures.
”Alas! While our capabilities to sustain hope were already exhausted, the price of petrol rose further to N650 per litre.
”Now, the leadership of the union has been inundated by members’ complaints that they could no longer go to work as a result of hike in the price of petrol and resultant high cost of transportation,” he said.
Olugbeko explained that it became inevitable for the union to direct members to go to work only two days weekly.
He added that an emergency NEC meeting would be convened to ratify the decision to decide the specific days of the week members were to go to work, while calling on the federal government to urgently do the needful as the action of the union against the hardship would have devastating effects on the students.