The Oyo State Government has called on its striking civil servants to¬†demonstrate greater understanding of the situation which has affected¬†the payment of salaries as at when due and call off their strike.
The state’s Head of Service, Mr. Soji Eniade, who made the call while¬†addressing newsmen in his office in Ibadan on Tuesday, urged the¬†workers to resume work and allow for further negotiations to be made
between labour and government.
He confirmed the receipt of the letter from the state council of the¬†Nigeria Labour Congress (NLC) to the effect that its national body had¬†directed it to commence an industrial action immediately as a result
of unpaid salaries.¬†Eniade, however, said it was on record that since the inception of the¬†present administration, payment of salaries had been effected latest¬†by the 25th of every month, adding that this feat had been maintained¬†until recently when allocation to states from the Federal Government¬†started nosediving.
He further maintained that the paucity of funds had been severally¬†discussed with the representatives of the labour unions on the need to¬†fashion out ways of addressing the unfortunate development.
The Head of Service said that the situation in which the state had¬†found itself called for partner between government and workers,¬†particularly on ways of improving the internally-generated revenue¬†(IGR) to augment the dwindling federal allocation.
“I like to personally plead with workers to resume work as it is our¬†joint responsibility to ensure a complete transformation of our state¬†to a very buoyant and self sustaining economy,‚Äô‚Äô he said.
Eniade noted that while the monthly wage bill stood at N5.2 billion,¬†the amount received last from the Federation Account was N2.6 billion,¬†leaving a shortfall of N2.6 billion for the payment of workers‚Äô
salaries alone, aside other developmental programmes.
While emphasizing the need for greater understanding on the part of¬†the workers, he said that the situation was not peculiar to the state¬†alone, stressing the state was owing only two months‚Äô salaries as¬†against some states owing their workers between five and nine months¬†salaries.
It is in view of the foregoing that government is pleading with the¬†workers in the state, who have enjoyed cordial relationship with the¬†present administration spanning a period of four years, to call off¬†their strike and allow the ongoing negotiations between it and labour¬†to continue,‚Äô‚Äô the Head of Service said.