Disengaged staff of moribund Delta Steel Company (DSC), Ovwian/Aaladja, Udu Local Government Area of Delta State are heaving a sigh of relief as Asset Management Corporation of Nigeria (AMCON) has commenced payment of their salary arrears.
It will be recalled that the arrears were accumulated when Global Infrastructure Nigeria Ltd (GINL) acquired DSC and could not liquidate its huge indebtedness to some Nigerian banks, resulting in the takeover of the company by AMCON.
The payment began Monday, March 13 and ends Friday March 17.
But as of Thursday, no fewer than 1,545 of a total 1,682 beneficiaries, who were screened, had received cheques ranging from N100,000 to over N2 million depending on the staff level and nature of engagement.
Two representatives of the affected staff, who are overseeing the payment process with Receiver Manager for AMCOM, Dr Joseph Nwobike (SAN), Egbevwie Godfrey and Yusuf Nuru, expressed a mixed feeling of joy and pain among the beneficiaries.
“We have suffered untold hardship waiting for these salary arrears. A number of us have died.”
One needed just N15, 000 for medical attention, he could not raise it and died.
“AMCOM previously had Babington Ashaye and Chief Ajibola Aribisala as receiver managers, but not much happened. We are relieved that Dr. Nwobike has come to our rescue,” Nuru said.
“We are elated that this payment will lead to the opening of the company by the new operators and consequently engagement of several workers.”
“What we are not too happy about is that only 25 per cent of what we are owed is being paid. Besides, several casual staff, who are also being owed, were not captured and are not being paid.”
“I appeal to AMCON to look into their cases and release something to these our colleague. We are all affected,” Egbevwie added.