Gov. Abubakar Bagudu of Kebbi state on Sunday promised to look into the demand for improved welfare for lecturers at the Kebbi State University of Science and Technology, Aliero.
Bagudu made the promise when he met with the leadership of the Academic Staff Union of Universities (ASUU) of the institution at the Government House, Birnin Kebbi.
He said that the state required sincere and committed stakeholders that would guide the government through the right path to achieve sustainable growth in the education sector.
The governor said, “You have to help us as stakeholders because the problem will continue after my eight years in office, if we do not have sincere stakeholders that will put us in the correct path.”
He underscored the need for the education system in the state “to run well” and help to produce children that would be able to face the emerging competitive world.
He said that aside from diversifying to agriculture, especially rice production, government was also attracting investors in order to boost its revenue to be able to fund the university and others institutions in the state.
Earlier, the Chairman of ASUU, Dr Ibrahim Wawata, appealed to the governor to look into their demand for improved condition of service, especially salary increase and payment of academic allowances.
Wawata said: “Our issues have to do with the staff entitlements, academic allowances, promotion, annual salary increment and funding.
“The basic function of ASUU is teaching and research and an aspect of the research required certain equipment that can boost the productivity of the university.
“The university also needs strong collaboration with other universities within and outside Nigeria in the areas of teaching and research.”
In a remark, the Commissioner for Tertiary Education, Dr. Mukhtar Bunza, said that the state government included salary increase and promotion, among other things, in this year’s budget. Bunza said that the budgetary provision had been approved.
He said that the only pending issue had to do with the payment of allowances, adding that government was making efforts to address it.
He said: “I have met the representatives of ASUU in the university over the issue of academic allowances.
“This is not peculiar to Kebbi state. It has remained a burning issue between the Federal Government and ASwUU at the national level since 2009.”
The commissioner said that the government was making efforts to address all the issues affecting the university and other state-owned tertiary educational institutions.