Sana’a University staff continue demonstrating [Archives:2007/1039/Front Page]

April 5 2007

Saddam Al-Ashmori
SANA'A, April 4 ) For the fifth day, Sana'a University staffers have continued demonstrating in front of the university administration building, protesting both government and university unresponsiveness to their legal demands.

Sana'a University Staff Syndicate spokesman Abdullah Aziz stressed that the demonstration will continue unless their demands are met, noting that the newly-ordered cabinet reshuffle has prevented them from demonstrating in front of the Finance Ministry.

He noted that some demands have been met regarding releasing salaries that were suspended for three months for 47 staffers, as well as those of another 35 dead staffers. He indicated that the syndicate will sue the Civil Service and Finance Ministries and further request the judiciary freeze the university's finances for not implementing a March 7 ruling by the Capital Western Court.

Aziz explained that university staff will stop teaching for two hours each day, from 10 a.m. to noon, in association with the demonstration in front of the university administration building.

“We've received nothing except false promises that don't meet our just demands or our legal rights,” he maintained.

A statement released by the university staff syndicate assured its commitment to dialogue and peaceful expression of staff demands, indicating that both university administration and the government have failed to keep agreements signed with syndicate representatives.

The statement also demanded administrative, academic and financial independence in Yemeni universities, as well as implementing the March 7 ruling dictated by the Capital Western Court.

Additionally, it demanded the 700 computer systems given by President Ali Abdullah Saleh be given to staffers as gifts..

Further, the statement stressed the importance of enacting the Yemeni University Law regarding administrative and academic appointments, as well as implementing President Saleh's 1991 directive granting plots of land to Sana'a University staff according to the Sana'a University Council's Oct. 10, 2004 resolution, which dictates granting each staff member 144 square meters on which to build a house.

The syndicate further demanded a residence allowance for assistant teachers and readers in order to improve their living situations in return for their hard work. They also requested giving them computer systems to help them do their daily tasks as well as develop their skills and update their knowledge, together with internal paid scholarships and health insurance for those sent abroad.

Moreover, the statement demanded paying staffers a hardship allowance according to Wage Law No. 43 of 2005, as well as implementing a May 16, 2005 agreement with Sana'a University's former president dictating a 40 percent increase to be paid retroactively from January 2005.