300 ghost workers: Unions accuse Kogi HoS of blackmail

300 ghost workers: Unions accuse Kogi HoS of blackmail

Friday, December 27, 2019 1:48 pm

(FILE) Some Union officials

Richard Elesho/Lokoja

The Organised Labour in Kogi State has accused Head of Service, Mrs Deborah Ogunmola of blackmai over allegation that she has uncovered 300 ghost workers allegedly planted by senior civil servants in the state.

A statement by the Chairman Nigeria Labour Congress, Comrade Onuh Edoka and his Trade Union Congress counterpart, Comrade Ranti Ojo described the allegation as unfortunate given the fact that the state government had conducted staff verification exercise that lasted for over three years.

The Head of Service, Deborah Ogunmola had alleged that over 300 uncleared staff of Kogi State civil servant made their way back to the payroll of the state civil service through the help of top civil servants.

The labour in a statement issued on Friday noted that aside the normal verification exercise that lasted three years, the government also organised pay parade for all workers and had their biometric data captured.

The statement therefore challenged the Head of Service to publish the names of the ghost workers, their MDAs and the senior civil servants involved in the criminal activities.

The labour leaders said the government’s statements since after the screening indicated that the payment system has been made watertight and only the governor could order the inclusion of any names in the payroll and wondered how senior civil servants could gain access to the payroll again

They said until the identities of those involved are revealed, the organised labour would view the action of the Head of Service as a deliberate attempt to rubbish what the State government has achieved from the screening exercise and thereby throw the entire workforce into another round of screening exercise.

The organised labour also accused the Head of Service of finding avenues of perpetuating herself in office having reached her retirement age in service since two years ago.

The statement advised the state government not to listen to any advice that could set it against workers, noting that the Head of Service outburst was a coup against workers aimed at denying them their minimum wage.

It called on the State government to hasten the implementation of the minimum wage to the workforce as being done in other states.

They equally praised the government for prompt payment of state workers salary and urge the local government Administrators to emulate the state government by paying the local government workers and primary school teachers on time and also finding ways to improve on the percentages of the salaries being paid at that level of governance.

The statement reiterated the loyalty of the entire workforce to the state government and expressed the hope that government would reciprocate by giving priorities to workers welfare.

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