Monday, April 25, 2016 10:06 pm
Organised labour in Kogi state said on Monday in Lokoja said it would resume strike to impress it on the state government on the need to pay outstanding five-month salary arrears to workers.
This is contained in a communiqué issued by the Nigeria Labour Congress (NLC), the Trade Union Congress (TUC) and the Joint Negotiating Council (JNC) at the end of an emergency meeting.
The communiqué was jointly signed by Mr Onuh Edoka, the state NLC Chairman; Mr Ojo Ranti Matthew, Chairman of TUC and Mr Aaron Akeji, the Chairman of JNC.
The communiqué stated that previous promises by the state government to pay the salary arrears had not been kept.
It also condemned the payment of salary in piecemeal; adding that salaries for the months of October and November, 2015 were paid three months after each of the month was due.
The communiqué also decried the exclusion of workers employed between January and December, 2015 from receiving the November, 2015 salaries.
It urged the state government to pay those affected because they worked for the month.
According to the communiqué, “the state government is claiming that the employment of the concerned workers was irregular, since there was an embargo on employment in the state.’’
In a reaction, Mr Kingsley Fanwo, the Chief Press Secretary to Gov.Yahaya Bello, said it would be inappropriate for the workers to blame the government for the failure of the past administrations.
Fanwo said Bello’s administration was able to offset two months’ salary arrears within his 57 days in office.
“Labour was on an indefinite strike before the inauguration of the present administration, but the governor intervened to settle the industrial dispute”, he said.
He said the governor would undertake a holistic appraisal of the situation after the ongoing screening exercise with a view to addressing the salary issue once and for all.