Ogun Workers Declare Strike over Minimum Wage, Other Grievances

0

Workers in Ogun State have commenced a one-week warning strike over the failure of the government to implement the new minimum wage.

The state Chairman of the Nigeria Labour Congress, Emmanuel Bankole, declared the strike yesterday after a three-hour closed-door meeting between the leadership of organised labour and the state government officials, which ended deadlock.

The workers had given the state government a 14-day ultimatum to commence the payment of new minimum wage failure of which they vowed to embark on the strike.

The ultimatum expired last Wednesday.

The workers had earlier yesterday stormed the governor’s office, Oke-Mosan, Abeokuta to protest against the failure of the government to begin payment of the new minimum wage and pension reform bill among others.

The leadership of the organised labour which comprises NLC, Trade Union Congress (TUC) and Joint Negotiating Council later went into a closed-door meeting with the government.

Addressing journalists after the meeting, Bankole said the meeting between the labour and government had ended in a deadlock, stressing that the unions have decided to embark on a one-week strike.

According to Bankole, some of the demands included the abolition of the pension reform bill, the payment of gratuities, payment of an outstanding six years leave allowances, three years promotion and 134 months unpaid pension.

Bankole said, “Unfortunately the negotiation ended in a deadlock. And so the one-week warning strike will commence 12 midnight tomorrow (Wednesday).

“With the facts before us, Ogun state is not the poorest in South-West. 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.”

Reacting, the Special Adviser to Governor Dapo Abiodun on Public Affairs, Remmy Hazzan, expressed shock over the warning strike.

Hazzan insisted that the financial status of the state is too weak to implement the minimum wage.

He pledged that the state government would continue to engage the workers in order to resolve the issue.