Academic staff of the University of Calabar, UNICAL, who served as returning officers on March 28 Presidential and National Assembly elections, yesterday stormed the Independent National Electoral Commission, INEC, office in Calabar, Cross River State to protest the non-payment of their honorarium.
The lecturers threatened to boycott Saturday’s Governorship and House of Assembly elections if they were not promptly paid by the commission.
Nigerian Pilot gathered that each lecturer is entitled to an honorarium of N77, 000, but about a week after the elections, they were yet to be paid by INEC.
One of the protesting lecturers told journalists at the INEC headquarters in Calabar that they embarked on the action because the ill-treatment meted on them by the commission.
An academic staff, who declined to reveal his identity, disclosed that what they were paid in previous elections was higher than what the commission offered them in this year’s polls, though he declined to reveal the figure.
According to him, “they (INEC) slashed our honorarium without explanations and could not even pay what they agreed to pay us.”
But the state Resident Electoral Commissioner, REC, Mr. Sylvester Ezeani, condemned the protests by the lecturers, describing their action as “unfortunate.”
He said such action was expected of students and not academic staff, adding that efforts would be made to pay them today.
Nigerian Pilot had exclusively on Tuesday reported the resolve of the ad-hoc staff to boycott this Saturday’s polls over their unpaid allowances.
But the Chief Press Secretary to INEC Chairman, Mr. Kayode Idowu, had explained that the money had been paid to the National Youth Service Corps, NYSC.


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