The Benue State chapter of the Nigeria Labour Congress (NLC) has declared a one-week warning strike that is expected to begin on Tuesday, September 5, 2017.
The industrial action is coming due to the refusal of the state government to pay workers’ salaries for months.
Governor Samuel Ortom had on Tuesday pleaded with labour leaders to shelve the strike as his administration was doing everything to pay the workers their salaries.
However, the NLC and the Trade Union Congress (TUC) after their joint meeting held at the NLC secretariat located along Otukpo Road, Makurdi, on Thursday insisted that they would inevitably embarked on the exercise from Tuesday and end on September 13.
In a communiqué signed by the NLC Chairman, Godwin Anya and his TUC counterpart, Tordue Tartenger, the union observed that: “The statutory allocation from the federation account has not stopped coming to the state, not to mention the IGR, the supplementary support coming from the federal government under various sub-head namely; Bailout fund, Paris club and Stabilisation refund among others,”
It is understood that some months ago, the state governor had declared what he tagged as ‘state of emergency’ on salary payment.
He subsequently set up a committee to work out details of its implementation.
The committee has the Deputy Governor, Engr. Benson Abounu as chairman and Permanent Secretary, Ministry of Finance, Mr Matthew Uyina, as Secretary.
Other members are Commissioners of Finance, Attorney General and Commissioner of Justice, their colleagues in the Ministries of Health and Information as well as Advisers on Labour, Local Government and Chieftaincy Affairs, Development Cooperation, Rural Development and Cooperatives.
However, despite the declaration of the state of emergency on salary, workers are yet to receive their wages for months.