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Wednesday, 14 May 2014

Benue State Set to Retrench 34,000 Workers

Following the resistance of workers in Benue State to review the salary of workers downward, in order to accommodate primary school teachers who have been on strike in the last eight months, the state government is set to sack 34,000 workers.  

Benue State governor, Mr  Gabriel Suswam,  dropped this hint at Zaki Biam area of the state, at the weekend, stressing that failure to do so would amount to running down governance.Governor Suswam had, at the May Day celebration, told workers in the state  that the prolonged primary school teachers strike needed to be addressed, hence the need to review downward the salary of workers, adding that himself (governor) and other political appointees would part with 25 per cent of their salaries, while other workers in their categories would part with various amount ranging from N3,000 to N10,000.

The state chairman of the  Nigeria Labour Congress (NLC),  Simon Anchaver, who urged  the government not to dare it, said  the state government should look inward to pay primary school teachers, adding that workers would fight with the last drop of their blood if government attempted slashing their salaries.

Reacting to the labour’s resistance, the governor said  at Zaki Biam during the kick-off of this year’s sales and distribution of fertilisers that with the resistance, his administration would resort to the devil’s alternative, i.e the downsizing the state workforce by 40 percent. 

The Nigerian Tribune investigation revealed that the state workforce, including local government workers and primary school teachers, stood at 85,000. 

Suswam explained that no state in the federation was collecting as much as Benue was paying its workers. He said that when he assumed leadership in the Benue, those collecting N26, 000 were now collecting N61, 100 and urged civil servants to forfeit part of their salaries to ensure the payment of teachers. 

He vowed that if that was the last thing, he would implement it, not minding the consequences in order to safeguard the future of the state as well as the incoming administration. 

The decision of the state government is to accommodate the  primary school teachers who have been on strike in the last eight months, following non implementation of minimum wage to them.

I have these to ask; 

Why Must the governor wait for 10months to take action of the sticking school teachers demanding for their rights (minimum Wage)?

Is it constitutionally right for the governor to authoritatively slash the salaries of Civil servants in the state in other to pay Teachers; failure to which they (civil servants) will be sacked? 

#BringOurChildrenBackToSchool - Suswam

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