Resign now if you can’t pay workers, TUC warns Governors
The Trade Union Congress of Nigeria (TUC) on Saturday advised state governors who could not address workers’ problems to resign.
The TUC President, Mr Bobboi Kaigama, said in Lagos that workers could no longer vouch for state governments that non-payment of salaries was as a result of lack of funds.
He said that the non-payment could be due to corruption. Kaigama made the TUC’s views known while addressing journalists after the union’s National Executive Council (NEC) meeting. He said that it was only the Lagos State Government that had been regularly paying workers’ salaries and allowances. “All the other states have one issue or the other in terms of salaries or benefits of their workers. “ You will discover that it is 13 months’ arrears of gratuities or pensions that have not been paid.
“In some cases, it is the contributory pension deductions that have not been remitted or promotions arrears and death benefits not been paid,” he said. He advocated a return to regional government, saying that state governments were failing in their responsibilities. “The trust we have in state government has eroded. “If it is for the purposes of payment of salaries and infrastructure development such as provision of health facilities, roads, rail transportation and others, we are better off with regional government,’’ Kaigama said,’’ he said.
The union leader noted that President Muhammadu Buhari had approved bailout funds and budget support funding to enable states to settle workers’ salaries, to no avail. Kaigama said that accountability in Nigeria was weak, and called for the strengthening of anti-graft agencies. On national minimum wage, Kaigama said that state governments should be determined to pay the wage when approved.
He also called on the Federal Government to declare a state of emergency in the power sector due to its deteriorating condition. ”No nation can develop without power,” he said. The labour leader urged the government to arrest and prosecute killers of innocent Nigerians in the guise of herdsmen and militia in different parts of the country. (NAN)