Lafia - The Joint Union of Nasarawa
State Tertiary Institutions (JUNSTI) on Tuesday decried an alleged non-payment
of 10 years retirement benefits to its members by the state government.
Mr Samuel Bashayi, the Chairman of the union, said this when
members of the union appeared before the state House of Assembly Committee on
Education, Science and Technology in Lafia.
He said that non-payment of the retirement benefits to its
members had affected their lives and their families negatively, hence the need
for the assembly to intervene, to improve on their standard of living.
“Our honorable members, we are here to present to you our
demands as well as the numerous challenges affecting members of Joint Union of
Tertiary Institution in the state so as to improve on the standard of education
in the state and the country at large.
“For the past ten years, there is non-payment of retirement
benefits to our members who have retired after they contributed positively to
the development of the state and the country at large.
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“Apart from that, there is backlog of promotions on ground
for several years, non accreditation of some courses, under staffing in most of
all the higher institutions.
"For example, the staff strength has continued to drop due
to retirement and there is no employment.
“We also want the state government to grant us autonomy
because if we are autonomous it would go along way in addressing the problems
and challenges confronting us as well as improving the standard of education in
"The autonomy of higher institutions would also give them
the right to organise convocation as when due, ensure timely accreditation of
courses, prompt promotion of its workers and ensure improved welfare package to
He also appealed to the government to increase the
retirement age from 60 to 65 years to enable the members to contribute
positively to the development of the state, considering the importance of
education to the society.
The chairman restated the commitment of the union to support
government efforts in improving the standard of education.
Responding, the Chairman of the house committee, Mr.Daniel
Oga-Ogazi, said the assembly decided to invite relevant stakeholders in the
sector to improve the standard of education.
“We heard all of your problems and challenges; we promise
you of our collaboration with you, other stakeholders and the state government
to see how to address these problems because no society will achieve meaningful
progress without sound education.''