Chairman, University of Ibadan chapter of the Academic Staff Union of Universities (ASUU), Deji Omole, has raised alarm of premature death of overworked Nigerian workers, calling on the Federal Government to start recruitment of academic staff, especially in federal institutions.
Omole in a release issued on Sunday, called for a thorough medical check-up by various institutions to ascertain the health conditions of their staff. He noted many lecturers who think they are well may have life-threatening health conditions.
He lamented that the health conditions of members of the union are fast deteriorating due to excessive workload by the failure of the federal government to employ more academics to cope with the number of students admitted.
Stating that while academic staff continue to work in the most inhuman conditions, the Federal Government has refused to pay their earned academic allowances from 2011 to date.
He disclosed that public universities in the country are short of not less than 40,000 lecturers, noting that due to unconducive working environment, job overload and non-approval of annual leaves, that death has taken grip on some his members.
Omole while apparently reacting to the death of a Professor of Exercise Physiology, Ademola Abass who died at the University of Ibadan, mourned that the late professor never showed no sign of ailment but suspected his untimely death might have stress-related.
He said’, ”Ademola Abass was an outstanding scholar of the university who was always ready to assist the students and the university system. The vacuum created by his sudden death will be very difficult to fill by the university.”
The ASUU boss noted that due to work-related stress and austerity measures, lecturers rarely have time to attend to their health, creating health complications which ultimately lead to incapacitation and sometimes death.