Labour leaders in Osun State on Monday suspended the strike action embarked upon by workers in the state over the non-payment of their salaries by the state government.
The Chairman of the Nigeria Labour Congress in the state, Mr. Jacob Adekomi, who announced to journalists that the strike had been suspended, said the decision was taken after the government and labour representatives had signed a Memorandum of Understanding on the issue.
The NLC chairman said workers agreed to suspend the strike which started on May 26 because the state government would begin payment of January and February 2015 salaries as from Monday (yesterday) while the remaining salaries would be paid with the bailout still being expected from the Federal Government.
A copy of the MoU made available to journalists showed that the Head of Service, Mr. Sunday Owoeye, led the permanent secretaries of the Ministries of Justice, Finance and Human Resources and Capacity Building/Public Service to sign the document.
The NLC chairman; Secretary, Rufus Adeyemi, Chairman, Joint Public Service Negotiating Council, Bayo Adejumo and Secretary JPSNC, Richard Oyegbami, signed the documents on behalf of the labour unions.
The MoU read, “Both parties, therefore, agreed to enter into this Memorandum of Understanding in anticipation of the bailout expected from the Federal Government on the issue of settlement of salary arrears and to show the state government’s commitment to the welfare of its workforce, having in mind the need to collect data towards the completion of the physical verification exercise of workers and retirees in the public service.
“The labour unions will suspend the ongoing strike action on the basis of the Memorandum of Understanding to allow all public service personnel audit and verification exercise as well as auditing of local government staff/primary school teachers and retires take place.”
The document stated that the screening exercise was not meant to witch-hunt or retrench any worker, adding that the exercise would enable the government to know the actual number of workers in the employment of the state.
They added that the state would also know the actual wage bill of workers and the number of pensioners and the amount to be spent to defray the bills.