Gov. Bala constitutes committee to address challenges of non-payment of workers’ salaries

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Story by Beatrice EARLAND, Bauchi

Governor Bala Abdulkadir Mohammed of Bauchi state, on Monday, constituted a committee mandated to address challenges and other complaints of non-payment of workers’ salaries in the state.

The committee was constituted after a closed-door meeting was held between the state government and leadership of the Nigeria Labour Congress in the state as part of efforts to call off the strike action by the Union.

The Chief of Staff, Ladan Salihu, while addressing a press conference at the Ramat House Bauchi, explained that the committee, which will be headed by the state Deputy Governor, Baba Tela and secretary to the state government, Mohammed Sabi’u Baba, will also include the leadership of the NLC, TUC, JNC, NULGE, the head of civil service, Special Adviser on civil service matters as well as other technocrats and professionals.

The COS, who spoke on behalf of the governor, said that during the meeting, the main thrust of the labour union demands includes challenges surrounding the issues of salary payment, promotions and advancement in the public service, remittances and the issue of the minimum wage, adding that all the issues were discussed extensively with State Governor with a view of proffering solutions to them.

“The committee whose time frame is for four weeks will take a holistic look at all the challenges, constraints, complains and limitations of all issues surrounding the non-payment of salaries. There was never a month that the Governor did not fund workers’ salaries; the problem is the challenges of managing the payroll and nominal roll. Salaries are being paid in the state, but the challenges in the system that exclude some workers are what created bottlenecks that impinge on the integrity of the government.

“The Committee will also look at the salary regime for the state by coming up with a template for both the local government and the state. It will also establish a credible payroll and nominal roll that will be backed by quality inputs, which will stand the test of time as well as create a feedback mechanism for the state” he said.

Also speaking, the state’s NLC Chairman, Comrade Danjuma Sale said that the meeting between the government and the labour union was a fruitful one as the union tabled all its grievances which the government promised to look into.

The NLC Chairman said that the leadership of labour in the state conveyed the outcome of the meeting to other members of the union with a view of calling off the strike action in the state, adding that the bone of contention behind the strike is the stability of salary payment as some workers have not been paid salaries for some months.

He expressed optimism that with the committee constituted by the state government, issues surrounding salary payment and other issues will be laid to rest.

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