POLYTECHNIC STAFF BURY COLLEAGUES
The remains of the three union leaders of the Rufus Giwa Polytechnic in Owo, Ondo State who met their untimely death in an auto crash while returning from a meeting with the state government on the new wage bill have been buried amid wailing at the weekend. At the interdenominational service held at the institution's sports complex, workers, students and relatives of the deceased could not hold back their tears as they described them as freedom fighters.
The union leaders, who died in a road mishap were: late Pastor Joel Kolawole Ale, Chief Kehinde Akinwumi and Charles Iwetan. They had gone for a meeting with the state government's representative over their request on their new salary structure which forced them to go on an indefinite strike.
In his sermon on the occasion, Pastor Emmanuel Babatunde called for unity among the workers of the polytechnic.
The clergy, who quoted from the scriptures Rev. 20;12-15 , urged the people to be more prayerful, adding that death was a debt for everybody. At the occasion, the authorities and Staff resolved that two persons each from the three deceased families should be given automatic employment to assist their relatives.
The Polytechnic workers also demanded the gratuity of the deceased be added to the new salary package to take good care of their aged parents, wives, children and other dependants. According to the Chairman, Academic Staff Union of Polytechnics (ASUP) of the institution, Mr. Oluwabanji Kumuyi, they would not resume from the strike until the government met their demand.
During the event, encomiums were poured on the departed union leaders as staff, students, friends and families of the deceased described as martyrs of their time.