Sunday, April 3, 2016 7:28 am
Talks between Oyo state government and labour unions to avert workers strike will continue on Monday.
However, both parties for now disagree on the validity of an old agreement that 90 per cent of Federal allocation be used to settle workers salaries.
Labour said it has to be renegotiated as the allocation has continued to dwindle to meet salaries. Government insists on its sanctity.
Government reinforced its position in a statement issued by its lead negotiator, Alhaji Ismael Alli, a former government secretary.
Alli said the 10-month old agreement government had with organised labour in the state over unpaid salaries is still in force and warned workers to refrain from confrontation.
He urged labour leaders to embrace dialogue and consultation instead of issuing threats and ultimatum of strike.
“As stakeholders they should brainstorm on how to bail the state out of its financial predicament,” he said.
Labour leaders and the Joint Negotiating Council had on March 29 issued a seven-day ultimatum to the government to meet with them over unpaid salaries and pension. It expires on Monday.
The state government had consequently convened a meeting with the labour leaders on March 31 and Friday, April 1 respectively.
Alli said in the statement that both parties had agreed that the 10-month-old agreement subsisted.
“At the meeting on Friday, the state government reaffirmed its compliance with the subsisting agreement with labour whereby 90 per cent of allocation from the Federation Account is devoted to payment of salaries and wages of workers on monthly basis,” he said.
The former SSG also observed that the present conduct of labour was at variance and in total disregard to due process, labour law and practices.
According to him, government believes that the labour leaders are being insensitive and confrontational.
“The labour leaders used the opportunity of the meeting to apologise to Gov. Abiola Ajimobi.
“They denied the allegations and apologized accordingly. They assured the government of cooperation and maintenance of industrial harmony in the state,’’ the statement quoted Alli as saying.