THE National Vice President of Medical and Health Workers Union, MHWUN, who also is the Kogi State Chairman of Nigeria Labour Congress, Comrade Onuh Edoka said they are still standing aside from commenting on the usage of the N30.8 billion bailout released to the state government because, government are yet to fulfilled all the agreement it enters with labour over the fund.
Edoka who is the National Vice President of Medical and Health Workers Union, MHWUN, stated this on Friday in Lokoja at the 14th Edition of North Central Zonal Conference of the union.
According to him, government was yet to release the 10% of the fund kept aside to offset arrears of state workers salary.
“We must appreciate the state government over the bailout. The bailout was effectively used by government. Any one who harbour contrary opinion should engage the government personally.
“However, we have declined to make a categorical statement on the usage of the fund as we should do because, government has not fulfilled all aspects of negotiations enter with labour before the release of the fund by CBN.
“Ten percent of the money was reserved to tackle arrears of months when percentage salary were paid to the state workers.
“The government promised to pay in instalment from the 10% reserved, but they have not commenced. When that is done, we shall come out to make a definite statement.
“We have computed those months when percentage were paid. What is needed now to offset all arrears of state workers who are on the clear list is N2.8 billion,” he said.
Edoka however frowned at some aides of the governor who are sabotaging the complete payment of salary to council workers.
“Local government were paid 85% for three month which was contrary to the governors directive for complete payment.
“The percentage payment to council workers was carried out by some of his appointees who are working internally to bring down the government. They have turned LG to their handbag which they carried about, and picked what they want.”
He therefore urged government to look into offsetting the outstanding salaries at the council areas as well as the implementation of the “One roof” scheme for health workers, following the signing to law of the bill by the governor.
I think there is a moral issue here. While the chairman talks of the payment of arrears to some workers who have been ‘cleared’ what is the labour Union doing in the case of people that seem to be permanently ‘uncleared’ even though they have been going to work all the while? Is the case of the woman who took herself to the TV station not an embarrassment to the Union leadership? Is injury to one no longer injury to all? At both the state and local government, a junk of faithful workers in that category are languishing!