By Zara Nwachinaemere, Abakaliki
The Nigeria labour congress (NLC) Ebonyi State Council, Saturday, urged Ebonyi State government to lift the embargo on employment in order to reduce the army of unemployed youths roaming the streets.
Factional chairman of the Union, Comrade Ikechukwu Nwafor, stated this in Abakaliki, Ebonyi state capital, while presenting his address in commemoration of the 2021 Workers Day.
He said the State Executive Council (SEC) of NLC, met on 27th April 2021 to deliberate on the theme of this year’s Workers’ Day, tagged: “COVID-19, Social and Economic Crisis: Challenges for Decent Jobs, Social Protection and Peoples’ Welfare,” as it concerns Ebonyi State.
Nwafor noted that after the deliberation they came to the conclusion that this year’s theme was timely and in consonance with the imports of the 2021 Workers’ Day celebration.
He said: “The State Congress commended the Federal and State Governments for their tireless efforts and innovative initiatives during the COVID-19 outbreak, which helped to curtail the spread of the pandemic and disappoint the dooms predictions of WHO and her collaborators. However, Government should be reminded that allowances of frontline Health Workers who risked their lives, with some paying the supreme price to save the nation from the health disaster, are still pending till date especially in Ebonyi State.
“Congress commended His Excellency, Governor Dave Umahi for infrastructural transformation in the State. His Excellency’s undeterred policy on infrastructure has placed Ebonyi State in the map of developed State in Nigeria.
“SEC commended Ebonyi State Workers for maintaining their identity of efficiency, commitment, courageousness, determination loyalty and love for father land despite frequent and unprecedented provocation, deprivation, denial, intimidation threat that characterize the government of the day. SEC encouraged workers’ in the state not to be discourage as hard times do not last only hard people last to enjoy the increase afterwards. Every problem or Government has expiry date and every atrocity has the day of reckoning.
“SEC noted that since the inception of the present administration, Government and Labour relationship in the State has taken a nosedive”.
The Nwafor led NLC called on the Federal and State Governments to set out a day every year to honour the frontline Health Workers who lost their lives in the fight to curtail spread of COVID-19.
Nwafor, advised the state government to stop interfering in Labour unions affair but to focus on partnering with Labour to improve on the condition of Civil Servants.
“His Excellency Should be proactive in addressing the deteriorating security situation in the State. Government should Shun politics and close ranks across party lines when the lives of Ebonyians are involve, as often the statement and body language of Government and political Actors seem to embolden these criminal elements that have continued to kill Ebonyians with reckless abandon” he added.
The factional chairman, charged Ebonyi state government to bring to book those Governor’s Aids already fingered in the communal clashes that have claimed lives of innocent citizens, to serve as a deterrent to others.
“Congress call on His excellency to re-engineer the Civil Service for productivity; restore the salary of Civil Servants slashed in 2016; pay workers living Wage through a new and improved salary structure; restore promotion for Civil Servants…”lmplement negotiated Minimum Wage for Workers and pay any outstanding COVID-19 inducement allowance” he stated..
He also urged the state government to revive the scholarship Board, Health Insurance Scheme, Housing Scheme among other moribund Boards and Agencies: “We believe strongly that these will help reduce the spate of insecurity and communal clashes presently witnessed in the State,” he noted.