Ogun workers suspend two-week strike

Following the intervention of the national leadership of organised labour, workers in Ogun State, have suspended their two-week old strike.

This was disclosed by the State Chairman of the Joint Public Service Negotiating Council (JNC), Comrade Abiodun Olakanmi, while addressing hundreds of workers at the state secretariat of the Nigeria Labour Congress (NLC), on Wednesday night.

The national presidents of the NLC, JNC, Trade Union Congress (TUC), National Union of Local Government Employees (NULGE) and National Association of Nigeria Nurses and Midwives (NANNM),  Comrades Ayuba Wabba, Kiri Mohammed, Bobboi Kaigama and Alani Adeniji, had  went into a closed -door meeting that lasted for about 10-hours with the state governor, Senator Ibikunle Amosun and other top officials of government.

The NLC president while briefing newsmen after the meeting said that a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) was signed between the government and the state organized labour, and that some resolutions were agreed upon.

Wabba said that the national leadership of the organized labour were witness to the agreement having received the commitment of the state government on the implementation of all the issues raised and discussed in the meeting.

He said, “We have been into discussion with the state government in the last 10-hours to look around the challenges surrounding the industrial dispute. We have come to the resolution of how the issues can be resolved. We witnessed the the signing of the MoU.

“We have received the commitment of the governor of the state and we believe that peace will be restored. Our believe is that both the employer and the employees are members of one big family. We believe that this issue will be put behind us. ”

While his TUC counterpart noted that they had the believe that mutual trust would be restored between the state organized labour and government.

Olakanmi said that the agreement was reached among the officials of the state government and representatives of state labour unions and the national leadership.

The state chairman of JNC, said that the meeting agreed that the strike action be suspended and no worker will be victimised on account of the strike.

It was also agreed on immediate offset of one year arrears of check-off dues and immediate release of 2015 promotion result.

The MoU partly read, “That the state government should pay global deductions with November 2016 salary and release global deductions every 90 days and as soon as bullet payment is received from the Federal Government and the state revenue improves, outstanding deduction shall be paid on or before May, 2017.

“Outstanding gratuities to be offset with N200million every other month effective from November, 2016.

“A Joint Committee for both government and labour should be set up to look at issues of the Contributory Pension Scheme and submit the report to the government within 90 days.

“A Joint Committee on both government and labour should be set up to look into the issues of the officers that have completed loan payments and whose money are still being deducted. Also officers that have completed loan repayment should be allowed to exit from the cooperative societies.

“Towards promoting industrial harmony, there should be instituted a quarterly meeting between the government and labour.”

The governor in his brief remarked lamented that the strike, no doubt, cost the state fortune, adding that no government in the history of the state had massage the ego of civil servants in the state.

He described civil servants in the state as the best in the federation, however, we should not mix civil service with politics.

Amosun added, ” I think lesson have been learnt. We are not all that was written in the papers. Attention has been drawn to us for wrongly for wrong reasons. I apologized to the good people of Ogun State and Nigeria in general.

“No governor dead or alive have actually massage the ego of civil servants in Ogun State. We will continue to embrace them. All of the issues on my honour, we will keep to it. We will continue to do that. We have shown them our books. The present situation is not our creation.

“We should not mix civil service with politics and that was where I got infuriated and still do.”