13 years after, no pension scheme, staff exit policy–Bauchi varsity lecturers lament

…20 sponsored PhD holders left institution

Rauf Oyewole, Bauchi

The Academic Staff Union of Universities (ASUU) of the Sa’adu Zungur University, Gadau (SAZUG), Bauchi State has lamented the absence of conditions of service 13 years after the establishment of the Institution.

The lecturers who are angry and confused about the security of the jobs said that several attempts to get the Management and Governing Council to clearly define the pension scheme and staff exit policy have been failing.

Speaking at a press conference held at the University’s Campus in Yuli on Saturday, the Union said that the absence of a well-defined pension scheme for its staff and the lack of a structured pension plan jeopardising the financial security of dedicated members who have served the institution diligently.

The SAZUG Branch Chairman of ASUU, Comrade Awwal Hussain Nuhu, said that “none of the staff of the university knows his/her fate after retirement or the fate of his/her family after his/her ultimate exit.

“It is pathetic, sorrowful, and lamentable to note that some of our members who have passed away have nothing to their families as death benefits despite their sacrifices and hard work through the years.

“The University Administration and the Governing Council have been handling this issue with laxity. All Efforts over the years to get the University Administration and the Governing Council clearly worked out a defined exit policy and dead benefit for the staff of the University proved abortive,” he said.

The lecturers urged the State Government to urgently establish a robust pension scheme that ensures the long-term well-being of the academic staff of the University.

According to them, the University Administration and the University Governing Council have over the years intentionally ignored and snubbed to address the Union’s demands despite several correspondence sent to them.

The Union also demanded for the implementation of Wage Award and Payment of Arrears. “It may be recalled that in 2023, the ASUU was given a wage award of 35% and 25%, effective from January 2023. Many universities across the country (Federal and State) have implemented the wage awards. It is therefore imperative that the University implements the wage award with arrears, effective from January 2023.

“Furthermore, we demand the prompt payment of any outstanding arrears owed to academic staff. Delayed payments create undue financial strain and affect morale.”

The Union also demanded for Excess Workload Allowance (EWLA) and Earned Academic Allowance (EAA) which it said are integral to recognising the additional efforts put forth by members. These allowances compensate for research, administrative duties, and other academic responsibilities.

The Chairman urged the government to take urgent action to address the issue of mass exodus of highly talented and world-class staff. “Most of these staff were trained from their masters to doctoral degrees by the University. Unfortunately, in recent times, over 20 PhD holders have left for other institutions that did not bear any of the costs associated with their training, leaving our State University at a disadvantage.”

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