Ogun State workers have commenced a one-week warning strike, over the inability of the state government of implementing the N30,000 minimum wage.
Tribune Online recalled that series of meeting held by the organised labour and government delegation on issues affecting the workers have failed to yield a positive result.
The workers had given the government a 14-day ultimatum, to begin the payment failure of which they vowed to embark on strike on the expiration of the ultimatum from midnight of Wednesday.
The State Chairman of the Nigeria Labour Congress (NLC), Comrade Emmanuel Bankole, while addressing newsmen after a three-hour closed-door meeting with government team, said the meeting ended in deadlock.
He accused the State Governor, Prince Dapo Abiodun, of being insensitive to the plight of the workers.
“Our negotiation with government side is a deadlock, and so the one-week warning strike will commence 12 midnight on Wednesday.
“With the facts before us, Ogun state is not the poorest in Southwest. If Lagos is paying and has continued to pay even with, Ondo state is paying and continue to pay, Oyo State is paying, there is no reason for Ogun State not to pay.
“And so we are saying no, all their excuses are unacceptable to us. The position of the government is unacceptable to us. What they said was that minimum wage will have to be delayed so that they can do certain things and we said no, enough is enough having waited for so long,” the NLC boss added.
Some of the workers’ demand include the abolition of the pension reform bill; payment of outstanding gratuities; payment of an outstanding six years leave allowances, three years promotion and 134 months unpaid pension.
He said “We are talking about gratuities that have not been paid for years. We are talking about leave allowances that have not been paid for years. We are talking about retirees that were shortchanged and not been paid. Since 2018, the promotion has not been done in Ogun State. These are the issues that we brought to the table and all attempts to get them to reason failed, and so we are embarking on the warning strike.”
In his reaction, the Special Adviser to the Governor on Public Affairs, Hon. Remmy Hazzan said the current financial status of the state was insufficient to implement the new wage, despite the fact that the workers’ demands are legitimate.
Hazzan assured that government would continue to engage the organised labour to ensure that the state is not plunged into industrial disharmony.