The lecturers say they are open to dialogue, but will not be intimidated.
Striking Plateau state Polytechnic lecturers have vowed to continue with their action until their demands are met, defying a government order directing them to resume work or be sacked.
Lecturers of five state-owned higher institutions are pressing for their backlogs of unpaid salaries to be cleared.
The state government has warned the workers to resume work immediately or be dismissed, vowing not to pay the outstanding salaries, as the matter was before a law court.
The president of the Senior Staff Association of Nigeria Polytechnics, Sunday Sabo, on Friday urged the government to immediately withdraw the order, as it was “unwarranted”.
At a press conference on Friday, the union accused the state government of “unnecessarily suffering” its members serving in the state.
The association said Plateau state was the only state government among the 36 states of the federation that has refused to comply with the new federal government salary structure.
“We are constrained to express our displeasure because Plateau state government today remains the only state in the country that is still having issues with her unions on the implementation of CONTEDISS and CONPCASS being the current salary regime paid to federal and state tertiary Institutions government,” the association said referring to the pay structures for Polytechnics.
“The state government is therefore urged to reason with the union and implement the salary structure in line with the national income, salaries and wages commission circular as well as all accrued arrears,” the union added.
The group also accused the Jonah Jang administration of not remitting federal government aid money for the schools, as when due.
“Statistics available indicate that Plateau state is the only state in the federation that does not sub-vent her state-owned tertiary institutions but treat them like mere arm of a ministry,” the group said.
Reacting on the “No work no pay” policy of the Plateau state government, the union’ s leader, Mr. Sabo, said the state government was acting in ignorance, explaining that the federal government took the union to court over the No work no pay Act, and salary structure matter, but the union won the case, and was issued certificates.
He said no member of the union will resume work until all their demands are met as requested by the union, pointing out that the union was ever ready to dialogue with government, but would not allow anyone to force them in resuming work without concrete agreement reached.
The union president then directed all striking lecturers to stay off work, until the union communicates to them otherwise.
WATCH: Governor Yahaya Bello's Roadmap to Hope 2023