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NLC-Civil Situation Room urges sick workers to stay at home

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Don’t reopen schools yet, sacked council chairmen tell Makinde
As workers in the Oyo State civil service resume work today, the Nigeria Labour Congress (NLC)-Civil Society Situation Room has urged workers who are in doubt of their health status to stay at home, saying nobody will coerce any civil servant to come to work.

The state’s Chairperson of the Situation Room and NLC Chairman, Bayo Titilola-Sodo, stated this yesterday in a communique made available to journalists in Ibadan.

Titilola-Sodo said the decision was part of the resolutions taken at the last meeting of the group, necessitated by the planned resumption of workers on Monday, June 22, 2020 and students in terminal classes on June 29, 2020.

According to the communique, the meeting had in attendance various leaders of the unions, which form the Situation Room, including NLC, Nigeria Union of Teachers (NUT), Joint Health Sector Unions (JOHESU), the Medical and Health Workers Union of Nigeria (MHWUN) and others.

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Titilola-Sodo said: “On resumption of all workers at the state secretariat, it has been agreed that there will be enforcement like temperature checking at the entrance to each ministry. The number of hand washers will be increased. Not less than one at the entrance of each ministry with water in constant supply and soup. Every worker will be supplied with two face-masks. They will as much as possible maintain physical distancing.

“We are, however, advising our members to take personal responsibility for their well-being and safety. If you are in doubt of your status, don’t go to work. Let your supervisor know that you won’t come to work this particular day and that will be taken. No one will be punished for not coming to work. Nobody will be coerced to go to work.

“As per the reopening of the schools, we have agreed that some things would be provided.

As that date is not sacrosanct, the government will be ready to postpone that day if certain conditions are not yet met by June 29.

“There must be provision of hand wash centres either directly by the government or with the co-operation of PTAs. There must be provision of sanitisers too and teachers must be on strict lookout for students whose health status are in doubt and quickly send them home.

“Thermometers must be available that the teachers would be able to use to test the temperature of the wards,” among others.

Meanwhile, the sacked chairmen of local councils in Oyo State under the auspices of Association of Local Government of Nigeria (ALGON), Oyo State Chapter, have advised Governor Seyi Makinde not to reopen schools in the state for resumption of pupils.

This was contained in a statement made available to journalists in Ibadan by its Chairman, Ayodeji Abass-Aleshinloye.

The group said: “Reopening of schools may be the wish of many parents, guardians, teachers and students because of the long time closure and academic time loss due to the outbreak of COVID-19 pandemic.

“This could have been a reason the governor was eager to reopen the schools on June 29, 2020 for students to prepare for their examinations.

“On the face of it, the governor’s action looks good and responsive to the people’s wish and anxiety. But we hasten to add that wishes and anxiety need to be measured carefully against co-ordinated verifiable medical scientific deductions in public health emergency like in the case of COVID-19 pandemic with its uncertainty, and projection at finding a cure for the global disease.”

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