…Says injury to one is injury to all ***
…As NGF urges calm over NLC strike***
There may be increased headache for the Kaduna State Governor now as the Academic Staff Union of Universities (ASUU), Kaduna State University Chapter, has directed its members to join the ongoing 5-day warning strike by public sector workers in Kaduna State.
The Kaduna state government was said to have incurred the workers’ anger after sacking close to 8,700 workers, allegedly to stem down expenses.
The ASUU Chairperson, Dr Peter Adamu gave the directive in a circular to the members of the union, issued in Kaduna on Monday.
Adamu said: “I am directed by the National Secretariat of our great union through the Zonal office Kano, for members to join the warning strike.
“Members should remember that ASUU is an affiliate of Nigeria Labour Congress (NLC) and the principal officers of ASUU were part of the NLC National Executive Council that took the decision on the strike action.
“Also, members that violate the strike action must note that the union will not be there for them when the wrath of the governor falls on them.
“We must unite for a just cause because injury to one is injury to all.”
The newsmen report that NLC National President, Comrade Ayuba Wabba, said at the five-day strike action that it would run its full course unless the state government attended to the workers grievances.
Some of the grievances included the recent sack of 7,000 local government workers and refusal of the state government to settle the entitlements of about 50, 000 it disengaged from service from 2017 to date.
Government activities in the state were completely paralised on the first day of the strike on Monday, with banks, schools, hospitals, water, electricity, rail and air services shut.
In a related development, the Nigeria Governors’ Forum (NGF) has appealed to the Nigeria Labour Congress (NLC) to exercise calm and restraint in its engagement with the Kaduna State Government.
The forum made the call in a statement signed by its Chairman and Governor of Ekiti, Dr Kayode Fayemi, on Monday in Abuja.
Fayemi called for cautious introspection on the part of labour, saying no meaningful progress had ever been achieved in an atmosphere of conflict and chaos.
“The NGF also wishes to remind the NLC that its actions can become counter-productive, especially as the last year 2020 has adversely affected workers socially and economically. “
He advised the NLC to explore the already open avenue of rapprochement that the Kaduna state government had provided to resolve the matter and join the state to evolve a convivial working environment that would be befitting for all.
“The NGF also calls on the NLC to be open-minded toward the altruistic intention of the staff audit that the Kaduna state is embarking upon to sanitise the state’s workforce and make it more productive.
“This should not be seen as a witch-hunt or an attempt to unnecessarily downsize the civil service.
“As we all know, all states are at present going through difficult times and the most feasible option will be for each state to device its own response to its unique challenges without undermining the rights of individuals to seek redress. “
Activities in the state have been paralysed as the five-day warning strike directed by the NLC over irregular sacking of civil servants began on Monday.
The NLC National President, Mr Ayuba Wabba, said at the kick-off of the action that it would run its full course unless the state government attended to the workers’ grievances.