For a second day consecutively, the entry and exit gates of the Oyo State Secretariat are shut owing to a protest by workers and pensioners under the umbrella of the Nigeria Labour Congress (NLC), the Trade Union Congress (TUC) and the Nigeria Union of Pensioners (NUP) over a number of demands from the state government.
The workers had on Monday staged a similar protest promising to continue the protest on Tuesday until the state Governor, Seyi Makinde, addresses them.
The Nigerian Tribune Newspaper reports that just like Monday, the labour leaders parked their cars to block the gates, just as they discouraged workers from going into the State Secretariat to resume the day’s work and join the protest.
Appeals by the Executive Assistant to the governor on Security, Mr Sunday Odukoya, at the Secretariat gate, on Tuesday, fell on deaf ears as the labour leaders insisted on the governor speaking to them on their agitations.
During the conversation with Odukoya, the workers wondered why the governor was yet to deem it fit to personally talk to them.
On the government’s position put out by the state Commissioner for Information, Mr Dotun Oyelade, on Monday, the labour leaders said they wanted practical implementation of pronouncements just as they noted that there were a litany of other requests that the state government was yet to attend to.
Among requests of the workers are payment of salary deductions, palliatives for workers, upward review of pension allowances, payment of leave bonus, payment of gratuities to retirees who have been stagnated since the year 2021 and release of promotion letters for the Year 2021 and 2022.
Earlier, the State Government has rallied the Nigeria Labour Congress to discuss the issue of salary deductions exhaustively, before embarking on any form of protest.
In a statement issued by the Commissioner of Information and Orientation, Prince Dotun Oyelade, the Oyo State Government said only three months and not six months deductions are owed workers.
The statement added that every State in the federation owes workers salary deductions and the three months owed by Oyo State is the least.
According to the Commissioner, the NLC had shown over the years that they are in support of the present administration because of good governance, but asked them to reflect on the disposition of government to workers’ welfare.