The Nigeria Labour Congress (NLC) has written a letter to Okezie Ikpeazu, the governor of Abia State, over unpaid salaries and pensions of workers in the state.
In the letter dated November 4, Ayuba Wabba, NLC president, accused Ikpeazu of “serial violations” of the principles and norms of decent work over payment of salaries.
Wabba dismissed the statement attributed to the state government over prompt payment of salaries.
He said it was unfortunate that Abia state was turning out to become one of Nigeria’s most worker-unfriendly sub-national governments on account of the huge unpaid salary.
“The attention of the Nigeria Labour Congress has been drawn to media statements attributed to the government of Abia state demanding an apology for reports that the state is indebted to workers and pensioners on arrears of salaries and pension benefits,” the NLC president said.
“The media statement also stated that the Abia state government posited that the state is up to date in terms of its wage and pension obligations to workers and senior citizens in the state.
“While the Nigeria Labour Congress would not want to join issues with the Abia state government on its claims, we wish to counsel that facts are sacred, especially where the records of wage administration in Abia state is conspicuous in the public domain.”
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Highlighting the workers in Abia being owed salaries and pensions, the NLC president said: “It is on record that the Abia state government owes workers and pensioners in the following establishments:
1. Local government employees – 3 months’ salaries.
2. Staff of ABSUTH – 23 months’ salary arrears.
3. HMB – 13 months’ salary arrears.
4. Secondary school teachers – 11 months of salaries.
5. Primary school teachers – 3 months’ salary.
6. Pensioners in Abia State – 30 months’ pension benefits (Pensioners in the judiciary sector are owed monthly pension benefits from February 2021 to date).
7. Workers in Abia State Polytechnic – 30 months’ salary arrears.
8. Workers in Abia State College of Education – 29 months’ salary.
9. Workers in Abia State College of Health Sciences – 5 months.
“Furthermore, the approved CONHESS is yet to be implemented in Abia State since May 2021 till date.
“It is on record that the NBTE withdrew the accreditation of the Abia State Polytechnic recently. The list of infractions against workers in Abia State goes on and on.”