Ernest Chinwo in Port Harcourt
Rivers State Governor, Nyesom Wike, has called on the leadership of labour unions to place the public interest of the state above other considerations in their engagements with the state government.
Wike made this call yesterday while inaugurating the secretariat of the Rivers State’s chapter of Nigeria Labour Congress (NLC) in Port Harcourt. The secretariat is a three-storey building with conference halls, offices, stores and multiple staircases.
He said: “For me, Rivers first before any other thing. Before you go on strike or declare any dispute with the Rivers State Government, look through and check what the implications would be for Rivers State.
“We need teachers. But the employment of teachers will be based on examination. It will be based on merit. The Permanent Secretary, Ministry of Education and the Chairman of Rivers State Senior Secondary Schools Board have been directed to determine how many teachers are needed before a consultant is engaged to conduct the examination.”
The governor warned that principals involved in collecting monies from students would be sanctioned because state government would not tolerate any contravention of its directive on the abolition of all forms of fees in state-owned schools.
Wike also assured the NLC of his administration’s continued partnership for the good of Rivers State.
He explained that the secretariat was a demonstration of state government’s resolve to create enabling environment for labour leaders to work towards improving labour/government relations.
Chairman of NLC Rivers State, Comrade Beatrice Itubo, commended the governor for building the secretariat despite recent economic challenges. She said labour is committed to improving the synergy with the state government for
the development of the state.