Thousands of the combined staff of the three colleges of education in Kwara state staged a peaceful protest over unpaid salaries.
The institutions affected are Colleges of Education, Oro, Ilorin and Lafiagi across the three senatorial districts in the state as well as the College of Arabic and Islamic Studies(CAILS) in ilorin staged the protested over non-payments of their salaries for over twenty-four months by the outgoing administration of Governor Abdulfatah Ahmed.
The protesters marched from their College of Education Ilorin through to the General post office, Governor’s office up to government house,Ilorin.
While the protest was on, another union, Public Road sweepers in the state mostly women in the employment of the state government also joined the protest, claiming non-payments of their salaries too.
It was like a harvest of protest marches as the protesters who went around the major streets of ilorin such as Taiwo,Unity, Fate, and Post office areas among others later converged at the government house gate.
Their placards read,”Gov Ahmed Pay our salaries before you leave office”, “We are suffering many of us have died, enough is enough”,
“Remember you also have families pay us our dues” “EFCC should intervene why we have not been paid..where is Kwara money”??”
They barricaded the gates, preventing visitors from going in and out cursing the governor and his aides over their untold sufferings as a result of non-payments of their salaries and were throwing stones at the gate .
The armed policemen officers at the gate, however, cautioned them to control their temper and continue their protests peacefully.
Their spokesperson, state Chairman Committee of Unions of Tertiary Institutions(CUTI) Comrade Imam Abubakar told journalists that they not been paid for over twenty-four months, equivalent to two years.
He explained that in 2015, they were owed eleven months, while in 2017 they were owed seven months and since then till now they have not been paid.
Comrade Abubakar said,”We decided to come out and protest because we have run out of patience. Many of our colleagues have died and several others are suffering various untold hardship as a result of the non-payment of our salaries.
“Many have been embarrassed and sent out from their homes by their landlords and many families have been unjustly separated because of this predicaments.
“They told us severally that they used to pay us through the Internally Generated Revenue(IGR) but that that the money they are making is no longer enough to pay us.
“We are aware they are paying other staff in the employment of the state government why did they single us out for this perpetual suffering?.We are appealing to the governor Alh Abdulfatah Ahmed to be magnanimous enough to pay us all our salaries before he leaves office on May 29 so that we can pray for him and wish him well.”
Also one of the sweepers in the employment of the state government said they are being owed eight months.