The Colleges of Education Academic Staff Union (COEASU) has expressed mixed feelings over the 40 per cent increase in salary of civil servants.
COEASU President, Dr Smart Odunayo Olugbeko, said the union was appalled at the Federal Government’s decision to exclude some categories of workers including lecturers and other workers in the tertiary institutions.
He recalled that various unions in the sector had made several overtures to the government on salary increase.
Olugbeko, in a statement, said the exclusion was an attempt by the government to divide Nigerian workers and cause confusion within the system.
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“The discriminatory increase is an attempt to promote divide and rule and make Nigerian workers unable to speak with one voice on the issues that affect their general welfare.
“Government, in granting the increase, explained that it was to enable civil servants to cushion the effect of inflation and increase in the cost of living as if lecturers and other workers in the tertiary education sector are immune against inflation and geometrical rise in cost of living.“
“It is disheartening to note that lecturers and other workers in colleges of Education had their last increase in salary in 2010 which was 13 years ago. The implication is that what the lecturers were earning in 2010 is the same amount they still earn in 2023,” he said.
He noted that the union had reached an understanding with the government team on virtually all issues raised for renegotiation except salary increase.
“It is unfortunate that the government at the various levels in Nigeria is treating the issue of salary increase as a privilege they give to workers at their whims and caprices.”