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Workers battle Imo state governor over salary and pension arrears

Workers battle Imo state governor over salary and pension arrears

- Civil servants in Imo have vowed to continue their protest until the government decides to pay them 100% of their salaries

- The state chairman of Trade Union Congress (TUC) Paul Akalazu said gratuities had not been paid since 1998

- Issues also raised by the workers include poor funding of local government councils and release of promotion exercise

Imo state workers, on Tuesday, May 1, trooped out during the 2018 May Day celebrations with protests and complaints over their conditions at Heroes Square in Owerri.

In a report by Vanguard, the workers said their protest would continue until the government decides to pay them 100% of their salaries. The complaints of the workers cut across salary arrears, pension arrears and other poor conditions of service.

Legit.ng gathered that the workers were also not happy that pensioners in the state, had not been paid their pension between 30 to 54 months among other labour issues.

According to the state chairman of Trade Union Congress (TUC) Paul Akalazu, gratuities had not been paid since 1998.

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It will be recalled that the Imo state government entered into an agreement of 70/30% salary payment formula in 2016, with the state leadership of NLC.

Akalazu said: “Sir, you are aware that the workers have been receiving percentage salaries since January 2016. The workers have received between 70 and 30 per cent salaries with the exception of those on grade levels 01-06 that recieve 100 per cent. The reason for the percentage salary was attributed to the national economic recession.

“The state of the pensions payment and the hardship experienced daily by pensioners in the state is having a retrospective effect on public service. When workers remember that the pensioners are owed between 30 and 54 months of pensions as obtained in different sectors, it kills their morale because of the uncertainty that would face them when they retire.”

Other issues raised by the workers include: “Non payment of gratuities, non-payment of salaries to Ada-Palm workers, payment of arrears owed lawyers in the Ministry of Justice, poor funding of local government councils and release of promotion exercise among others."

In a previous report by Legit.ng, the governor of Bauchi state, Mohammed Abubakar, on Tuesday, May 1, told civil servants that the state does not have the power and will to pay the proposed new monthly minimum wage of N66,500 to its workers.

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The Nation reports that the governor was, however, quick to add that the state can only change this stand if the federal allocation to state increases, as demanded by Nigeria Labour Congress (NLC) on behalf of the state workers.

Speaking at the Abubakar Tafawa Balewa Stadium, Bauchi, where workers gathered to mark the 2018 May Day, the governor said the state generates little revenue.

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Source: Legit.ng

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