*As College, Workers Suspend Four Months Industrial Action, Apologise to Management for Lecturers’ Unruly Conduct
By Adeola Oladele, Ibadan
Following the over four months industrial action embarked upon by the lecturers and non-academic staff of Emmanuel Alayande College of Education, Oyo, Oyo State, the Special Adviser to the Governor on Education, Dr. Bisi Akin-Alabi has successfully led a team that brokered peace between the state government and stakeholders of the college, led by the Chairman of the institutions branch of COEASU, Mr Olusegun Oyewumi, and other union leaders, at a meeting held at the Ministry of Education, Secretariat, Ibadan, on Sunday.
The striking lecturers and non-academic staff of the college of education, however, suspended their industrial action with immediate effect, while the Chairman of COEASU of the college also tendered an “unreserved apology” to the management of the college for what it called the deplorable conduct of some of its members on November 1.
According to a communiqué issued at the end of the meeting, the management of the institution also agreed not to press criminal charges against members of the academic staff union at the centre of the “deplorable incident,” details of which the communique was silent upon.
The Provost of the College, Dr. Rasak Adefabi, led the management delegation to the meeting, which was also attended by students unions’ representatives, led by the Chairman of the state’s axis of the National Association of Nigerian Students (NANS), Mr Moronkola Teslim.
The joint communiqué, which was issued at the end of the five-hour parley, indicated that the lecturers would suspend their strike on Tuesday, November 6, which would be followed immediately by the payment of outstanding salaries, starting with the October 2018 salaries.
The communiqué, signed by all the union leaders, also stated that academic activities would resume fully with immediate effect.
The communiqué reads, “That COEASU will suspend the strike action on Tuesday, November 6, 2018, following which payment of October 2018 salary will be made to its members on the same day. That the rumour making the rounds on sacking of a number of staff was dispelled.
“That COEASU of the college should tender formal unreserved apology to the Governing Council and the college management on the deplorable incident of Thursday, November 1.
“As such, all proposed criminal charges will be dropped and no staff shall be victimized or disciplined as a result of the strike action. That COEASU of the college should be more civil in their approach to agitation of their grievances in the future.
“Based on the recent interventions of the Special Adviser to the governor on education, which culminated in an all-stakeholders’ meeting on Sunday, November 4, 2018, the union hereby decided to suspend her ongoing local industrial action with immediate effect.
“I write on behalf of the entire COEASU, EACOED, Oyo, to express our regret and remorse and tender an unreserved apology to the college management for the unfortunate incident of Thursday, November 1, 2018. The apology is tendered in good faith and we appeal that you receive such in the same vein.”
Other stakeholders at the parley were the Chairmen of the institution’s branch of the senior staff union and Non-academic Staff Union (NASU) Messrs Segun Adeniji and Fatai Adebayo respectively.
Also in attendance were the NANS Oyo State axis Chairman, Mr Moronkola Teslim; the college’s Students’ Union President, Mr. Afolabi Lawal, as well as the acting Permanent Secretary in the ministry of education, Mrs Ronke Fatoki, among others.