Sheriff Balogun in Abeokuta
Staffs of Ogun State Broadcasting Corporation (OGBC), Abeokuta wednesday shut down the radio station over unpaid salary of workers.
Â The workers who also staged a peaceful protest locked the main entrance of the station, chants songs, carried placards withÂ various inscriptions such as â€˜Hunger is killing usâ€™, OGBC cutting grass with N750,000â€™, â€˜Our present is uncertain and our future is not guaranteed, pay our pensionâ€™.
Â Addressing journalists at the scene of the incident, the Chairman Radio, Television and Theatre Workers Union (RATTAWU) in the station, Mr. Ayo Aina, said they decided to shut down the station after the expiration of 21 days, seven days and three days ultimatum given to the management of the station.
Â He berated management of the station for spending the monthly subvention from the state government and the revenue being generated by the station, recklessly.
Aina, who noted that the state government has been paying N10miilion monthly subvention regularly, accused the management of squandering the resources of OGBC on frivolity instead of paying salaries and other emolument of staff.
Â The protesting workers said they embarked on the action to protest the insensitivity of the management to the plight of the workers.
They added that their monthly subvention was raised from N3.5million by the incumbent governor to N10milliom, embarked on upgrade of their equipment, while the station generates at least N8million on a monthly basis, yet the workers are suffering.
â€œSince 2012, workersâ€™ pension estimated around N50million has not been paid, while cooperative societies have not been remitted. Imagine, the management claimed it cut grasses with a whooping sum of N750,000, while the station has failed to remit N1,990,931 National Housing Fund between 2013 and 2016 and presently owing National Broadcasting Commission (NBC) a sum of N9.5million from 2012 till date.
Â â€œWe even lost one of our members, Kemi Mulero, last Saturday and the management hurriedly paid her four monthsâ€™ salary to her husband on Monday. To us, that is the wickedness of the highest order. For this, we are shutting down the station until at least, our four months salaries are paid,â€ he stated.
Â Also, Chairman, Nigeria Union of Journalists (NUJ), OGBC chapel, Biodun Ogundipe, blamed the management for the strike, noting the situation should not have got to the level if the management had jaw-jawed with the workers.
Â He accused the management of approving IoUs, collecting salaries in advance as well as buying and distributing fuel among themselves, instead of ensuring workers welfare.
Â Meanwhile, Head of Service in the state, Mr. Abayomi Sobande, while addressing workers, urged them to exercise patience with the management of the station.
Â He said dialogue remained the best approach to labour crisis, adding that a meeting would be organised between the management and workers of the station with the view to finding solution to the issue, submitting that such demonstration could scare away potential investors away from the state.