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Friday, December 8, 2023

Non–academics paralyse universities

Universities throughout the country were paralysed yesterday due to a token strike by the non-academic staff, 
including administrative officers against the government’s delay in rectifying anomalies in their salaries. 
All examinations had to be postponed.

President of the Inter University Trade Union Federation R. M. Chandrapala told The Island that their trade union

action had been very successful and all universities including Jaffna had supported the strike.

“We will go on strike today too as scheduled,” he said.

Chandrapala said that if the government failed positively to respond to their 48-hour token strike they would

launch an all-out strike from Feb. 29.

He said the university non academic workers had been taken for a ride by successive governments since 2006 and the

incumbent Higher Education Minister S. B. Dissanayake had followed suit.

“But this time around we will not give up our agitation until demands are met,” Chandrapala said, adding they had

demonstrated through the strike that universities could not function without them.

When contacted by The Island for comment, Secretary to the Higher Education Ministry Dr. Sunil Jayantha Navaratne

said that discussions with non-academics had not been successful.

He said that the National Salaries and Cadre Commission (NSCC) did not accept that there were anomalies in the

salaries of university non academic staff.

“We will find a solution shortly for this problem,” Dr. Navaratne said.
by Dasun Edirisinghe


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