Unpaid salaries: Labour gives Akeredolu 24 hours’ ultimatum

Babatope Okeowo / 15 minutes ago

The organized labour in Ondo State has given Governor Oluwarotimi Akeredolu 24 hours within which to pay backlog of salary arrears being owed or face prolonged industrial action. In a letter signed by State Chairmen of Nigeria Labour Congress (NLC), Trade Union Congress (TUC) and Joint Negotiating Council (JNC), Tayo Ogunleye, Soladoye Ekundayo and Abel Oloniyo said the salary arrears must be paid from the N20 billion Paris club refund. The workers in a letter addressed to the governor dated 9th November, 2018 and made available to reporters yesterday gave the governor up till 12 noon Tuesday 13th November, 2018 to pay the salaries arrears. They accused Akeredolu of not consulting labour unions as agreed on the release of Paris club refund to the state by the federal government. According to the workers, they would not be able to guarantee industrial peace in the state should the government fail to pay the outstanding salaries on Tuesday. They, however, threatened to resume their suspended strike should Akeredolu fail to comply with their demand. The letter reads: “We believe that negotiation and agreement with labour was the key criteria of how the fund was released despite that the fund has been released to the state without consulting labour. “We humbly refer your Excellency to the agreement between labour and the state government before the suspension of our industrial action of 30th June, 2016.

“Furthermore, we want to draw the attention of His Excellency to the recommendations of a committee on payment of 6-month arrears of salary to Ondo state workers set up by the state government that was submitted to your Excellency in May 2017. “We also hold that the said agreement subsists between labour and the government of Ondo state irrespective of who mount the mantle of leadership particular when the State Head of Service remain the signatory to both the agreement and the committee report. “In view of the above, we call on the government to please pay in line without agreement as analyzed in our letter under reference on or before 12 noon Tuesday 13th of November, 2018 “Failure on the part of government to accede to our request may not be able to guarantee industrial peace by resuming our suspended strike of 30th June, 2016.”

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