ABIA WORKERS GROAN UNDER UNPAID ARREARS OF SALARIES AND PENSION BENEFITS – NLC

NLC/B.24/
1st November 2022
HE Dr. Okezie Ikpeazu
Governor of Abia State
Government House
Umuahia – Abia State

ABIA STATE WORKERS GROAN UNDER A HEAVY BURDEN OF ARREARS OF OWED MONTHLY SALARIES AND PENSION

We bring you fraternal greetings from the Nigeria Labour Congress.
The attention of the Nigeria Labour Congress has been drawn to media statements attributed to the government of Abia State demanding apology for reports that the State is indebted to workers and pensioners on arrears of salaries and pension benefits. 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.
For the records, we wish to draw the attention of Your Excellency to the fact of the serial violations of the norms and principles of decent work which chief pillars are living wages paid as and when due by the Abia State Government.
It is unfortunate, Your Excellency, that the Abia State is turning out to become one of Nigeria’s most worker-unfriendly sub-national governments. 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.
We use this medium to call on the Abia State Government to invest the resources of the state in settling the huge arrears of unpaid salaries, allowances and other entitlements owed workers and pensioners in the state rather than pursuing shadows and silhouettes in both public and private media within and outside the state.
In the event that the Abia State Government continues to play the Ostrich with the lives of workers and pensioners, the Nigeria Labour Congress will be left with no option than to deploy the full weight of the power of trade unions and workers in the country.
While we await your swift action on the issues raised in this letter and earlier ones, please accept our very warm regards.

Comrade Ayuba Wabba, mni
President

Cc: Director-General, State Security Service

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