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16 Jun 2016

Oyo workers protest over unpaid salaries, policy

Workers in the Oyo State Public Service yesterday in Ibadan held a rally to protest against their unpaid six months salaries and government’s controversial proposal to handover the management of some schools to private bodies.
The rally, which was coordinated by the national body of the Nigeria Labour Congress (NLC), took off from the Oyo State Secretariat of the NLC at Agodi-Gate at about 10.30 am.
The workers marched through Oje, Beere, Mapo and Oja’Oba carrying placards with various inscriptions and chanting solidarity songs.
Addressing the gathering, the state NLC Chairman, Waheed Olojede, said the rally was to further protest against what he called the state’s anti-workers policy.
He said while workers have fulfilled their side of service delivery, government owes them six months arrears of salaries, backlog of pension and gratuity of pensioners.
He said the workers are also saying no to privatisation and sale of public secondary schools in the state.
The labour leader noted that the Constitution of Nigeria allows peaceful procession, stating the union would not in any way engage in acts of violence.
NLC National Deputy President, Peter Adeyemi, and state secretary of the National Union of Road Transport Workers (NURTW), maintained that the rally was all encompassing.
Earlier, the state governor Abiola Ajimobi, had said in a radio programme, “Eyi Ara” that the strike was ill advised, adding, labour had no prior dispute with government, nor did it give any ultimatum in compliance with labour laws.
The government has however clarified that it was not selling public schools, but only inviting private sector participation in their running in order to boost the sector.
In a related development, students of Tai Solarin College of Education (TASCE), Omu-Ijebu, Ogun State yesterday in Abeokuta, staged a peaceful protest over alleged non-payment of 13 months salaries owed the teaching and non-teaching staff of the institution.
The angry students, who accused the state government of inadequate funding, lamented the poor state of facilities at the institution.


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