The Oyo State Government on Wednesday threatened to invoke the ‘no-work no-pay rule’ on workers in the state for those who go ahead with plans to embark on indefinite strike.
In a statement signed by the Secretary to the Oyo State Government, Olalekan Alli, the government described the proposed strike by labour unions in the state as “illegal, unwarranted and unjustifiable”, adding that such, ”moves must be stopped.”
Workers in the state have threatened to embark on strike over alleged 17-month arrears of salaries of workers in the state’s tertiary institutions, 56-month arrears of pension and gratuity of retired primary school teachers and the sack of 256 members of staff of LAUTECH Teaching Hospital, Ogbomoso.
The three-day warning strike is scheduled to hold from January 24 to 26.
Mr. Alli said upon receipt of the letter, the government invited labour leaders to a meeting in which they promised to attend but failed to attend at the scheduled time.
The government said it has consistently honoured its obligations to labour by ensuring monthly salaries are paid from the 100 per cent FAAC allocation to the State and the Budget Support Fund including over 70 per cent of other receivables (Excess Crude and Paris Club Reimbursement despite the Federal Government advice of 50 per cent payment therefrom for salaries).
Similarly, the statement said the government has also been fulfilling its other responsibilities, commitments and functions using other resources such as Internally Generated Revenue, credits and grants at its disposal to satisfy the yearnings of the people as would be expected, while salaries and pensions of workers at the State level have been paid up till November 2017, ”with only one month salary and pension (December 2017) outstanding.”
“By the laws setting up the tertiary institutions, Government is NOT responsible for the payment of salaries of workers in those institutions. In order to assist them, Government is ONLY obliged to grant the tertiary institutions SUBVENTIONS, which each institution would apply to whichever area of need that its Governing Council and Management may decide upon,” Mr. Alli argued.
“The recent forensic audit reports on the tertiary institutions revealed a great deal of shortcomings such as inefficiencies, leakages, poor management, and other ineptitude. Some institutions were even declared unsustainable and unviable. The consultant further recommended their closure. However, the recently constituted Governing Councils have been mandated to review their statuses and act suitably.”
The statement also alleged that contrary to labour’s allegation, although the state government on assumption of office in 2011 inherited Local Government Pension arrears totalling N4,736,741,934.49, it has disbursed pensions and gratuity of retired primary school teachers to the tune of N11,729,534,282.54.
It explained further that to avert further build up and eliminate the hardship arising therefrom, the Contributory Pension Scheme has been adopted as a solution to effectively address the issue.
“In view of the foregoing, and while dialogue continues, Government views the unilateral declaration of a three-day warning strike by Labour as absolutely illegal, unwarranted and unjustifiable. Government hereby appeals to Labour to shelve its illegal unilateral industrial action,” the statement said.
“Similarly, Government enjoins all workers in the State not to absent themselves from duty, as doing so will attract the no-work no-pay rule according to the Trade Dispute Act 2010 Section 43 (1)(a).”
Support PREMIUM TIMES' journalism of integrity and credibility
Good journalism costs a lot of money. Yet only good journalism can ensure the possibility of a good society, an accountable democracy, and a transparent government.
For continued free access to the best investigative journalism in the country we ask you to consider making a modest support to this noble endeavour.
By contributing to PREMIUM TIMES, you are helping to sustain a journalism of relevance and ensuring it remains free and available to all.
TEXT AD: To advertise here . Call Willie +2347088095401...