Workers in Ekiti State have declared that no amount of bribery allegations and blackmail levelled against their leaders by the state government would deter them from fighting for the payment of five months salaries and other entitlements owed them by Governor Ayodele Fayose-led government.
The labour leaders also described as unfortunate and misleading, the comment allegedly made by Governor Fayose that they were fighting the government over low sitting allowance being paid them as members of the allocation sharing committee, stressing that blackmail will not bring solutions to the crisis already generated by non-payment of salaries in the state.
The unionists made the remarks at the commencement of a 3-day fasting and prayers to seek God’s intervention in the salary problems at the secretariat of the Nigerian Union of Local Government Employees, NULGE, located along Iyin road, Ado Ekiti capital city.
The prayer session was coordinated by the Secretary of the Nigerian Labour Congress, Comrade Oluropo Olayemi, NLC Vice Chairman, Pastor Olugbenga Adeniyi, Chairman, Academic Staff Union of Secondary Schools, Com. Sola Adigun and Chairman, Community Health Extension Workers, Comrade, Idowu Fajulugbe.
The NLC Chairman in the State, Comrade Ade Adesanmi, said it was quite unfortunate that Governor Fayose could be making allegations against them on a state television, even when he knew that the entire workforce had exhibited immense understanding about the state’s finances since assumption of office.
“The allocation committee comprises the labour leaders, Head of Service, the Accountant General, traditional rulers, heads of tertiary institutions and many others, so we can’t be the only one to be paid sitting allowance. The Head of Service and our traditional rulers were paid as well.
“The question to ask is this, was the governor giving us the allowance to compromise and sabotage the welfare of workers? We want to say categorically that nobody bribed us. What we are fighting for is legitimate and no labour leader will compromise the welfare of workers no matter the blackmail”, he said.
Adesanmi said they made ten demands from the government, including payment of five month salaries, saying all their requests were their legitimate rights, which ordinarily should not have generated any bad blood.
“We have been holding meetings with government and making progresse until last Wednesday, when we demanded for the payment of at least three months salaries, but the government was adamant, saying it can’t pay. We later shifted to two months, despite that government maintained its stand that it could only pay one month.
“If we are comfortable with only one month’s salary, then there is no reason going on strike. If we are paid two months salaries today, no worker will go home with something because of commitments here and there, let alone paying only one month. We are resorting to this prayer because we knew there is nothing God can’t do. We are making it loud and clear that we won’t go back to work except we are paid.
“If we request for five months and we later shifted to two months, then government must accede to our request, because if nothing is done by June ending, then we will maintain that government must pay three months before we can resume work”, he stated.

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