Workers groan over unpaid salaries
May wait till June to get paid
Workers under the employment of Ondo State have decried what they term, the insensitivity of the state government to their plight, due to backlog of unpaid salaries and other benefits.
The civil servants and pensioners across the 18 local government areas are appealing to the Governor, Olusegun Mimiko to device means of getting money to offset the owed salaries, allowances and other entitlements; to reduce the agony and hunger they have endured since December 2015.
A civil servant, in the Ministry of Finance, who pleaded anonymity, lamented that government is owing civil servants five months salaries from December till date, though the local government workers, teachers and pensioners received their December wages about four weeks ago.
The source disclosed that local governments were able to influence their payment due to the directive from the Federal Government that council funds should not be interfered with by the state, with the warning that state accountant-generals will be held responsible for such act.
She lamented that workers in the mainstream-ministries and parastatals have not received their December salaries, though they have all got their November deductions and have to wait till June, as promised by the governor, when he met labour leaders over the financial challenges faced by the state.
The Guardian gathered that the union leaders made it mandatory for government to pay workers immediately, but Mimiko told them that the only option that would make such feasible is to embark on massive retrenchment so that available funds will be enough to pay the remaining workforce.
This revelation sent jitters down the spine of the union leaders, who were left with no option but to wait till June, by which time the governor promised to pay them seven months arrears.
Efforts to reach the chairman of Nigeria Labour Congress (NLC), Mrs. Bosede Daramola and the chairman of Joint Public Service Negotiating Council (JNC), Mr. Sunday Adeleye, were not successful. Even the Commissioner for Finance, Chief Yele Ogundipe, could not be reached.
But the Commissioner for Health, Dr. Dayo Adeyanju, explained how he pacified health workers and reminded them of the caring heart initiatives implanted by Mimiko to ensure the welfare of workers.
Adeyanju said, prior to the global oil doom, which made the economy to plummet, Ondo was one of the states to implement the 11, 13 and 27 per cent increment and paid the 13th month benefits for staff during yuletide.
“Anybody who knows Mimiko very well will know that one of the things he fears the most is owing workers. The governor hates such situation and can never be happy under such atmosphere,” he said.
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