Imo workers embark on strike

Workers in Imo on Wednesday have embarked on an indefinite strike to protest the alleged refusal by the State Government to sign an agreement it recently reached with organised labour in the state.

The labour officials locked the entrance gate to the state’s secretariat and no worker was seen at the premises of the secretariat along Owerri-Port Harcourt road.

Contractors renovating some buildings and staff of Diamond Bank located in the premises were also locked out by the protesting workers.

In a circular, signed by the state’s Chairman and the Secretary of the Nigerian Labour Congress (NLC), Reginald Anyadike and Austine Chilakpu respectively, the workers said they were dismayed by government’s refusal to sign the agreement reached with workers.

“This singular act portends high level of distrust, deceit and neglect to the principle of collective bargaining,” the statement said, directing workers in the state to sit at home, until government signs the document.

The statement was however silent on the content of the agreement.

But it was learnt that the agreement might not be unconnected with the controversial Community Government Council (CGC) initiative of Governor Rochas Okorocha’s administration.

Part of the proposed CGC also called “fourth tier” government, is the massive redeployment of workers to rural areas, where some are expected to work in farms established by the government.

Mr. Okorocha has maintained that the initiative would solve the problem of redundancy in the state’s civil service, transform rural areas and improve the economy of the state.

The state’s Commissioner for Information, Obinna Duruji, said that the matter is being resolved.

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