Academic Staff Union of Polytechnics (ASUP) and Non-academic Staff Union of Polytechnics (NASUP) at the Nuhu Bamalli Polytechnic, Zaria, Kaduna State, have announced to embark on a strike over failure from the state government to respond to some of their demands.
According to the unions, the military personnel deployed to the school in case of any security breech have been withdrawn from the school.
The union during a joint press conference in Zaria by Mr Usman-Shehu Sulaiman, Chairman of ASUP, Nuhu Bamalli Polytechnic chapter alerted the state government, parents, and other important stakeholders about the security and other issues impeding academic research and learning operations at the university.
It would be recalled in June 2021, academic staff, their families, and students were kidnapped at the institution, forcing the state government to replace the school’s security guards with military soldiers and some members of the Kaduna State Vigilance Service.
But after one year since they were deployed to the institution, the college’s military and vigilante staff are said to be planning to leave due to non-payment of their four-month allowance, according to Sulaiman.
“The withdrawal of service by the military at the school would put everybody at risk of abduction and other criminal acts. There are informants who will leak this development,” he said.
According to him, the school’s monthly overhead has not been paid since February 2023, and that this has caused the school to postpone exams and result presentations, supply identity cards to students, and conduct weed control activities, among other things.
He said the school was in its 13th week of resumption and was meant to have begun examinations, but they could not be held due to the non-provision of the booklet.
“We will issue a one-week ultimatum to the government to address payment of the backlog of allowances,” he said.
Malam Mahmud Aliyu-Kwarbai, chairman of the non-academic staff union of the polytechnic, said staff members live in constant fear of security breaches.
“We don’t have functional security in the school; our security was withdrawn and replaced by security personnel from Kaduna State Vigilance Service (KadVS).
“The KadVS personnel attached to the school had left their beat because of the non-payment of their allowances, which led to serious theft and vandalism of school properties,” Kwarbai said.
He further stated that the government’s Single Treasury Account (TSA) policy has jeopardised the institution’s smooth operation, as the college has only received an overhead once since January 2023.
The polytechnic’s Public Relations Officer, Malam Abdullahi Shehu, confirmed the development to reporters, adding that the school administration was trying to rectify the highlighted concerns.