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Labaran Maku Ex-minister urges Nasarawa govt to settle workers’ salaries

Maku said that the non-payment of salaries had made it difficult to cope with the current economic recession.

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Labaran Maku

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Former information minister and APGA National Secretary Labaran Maku has appealed to Gov. Umaru Al-Makura of Nasarawa State to pay workers’ salaries so as to end their strike.

“The workers have practically shut down the state for more than a month now. Schools, offices and even industries have been closed down. The state government should act immediately,” Maku told the News Agency of Nigeria (NAN), on Tuesday in Lafia.

He said that it was “wrong” for government to remain silent over a strike that had dragged on for more than a month, and declared such posture as “insensitive”.

“The governor should show that he is sensitive to workers welfare and pay them their dues.

“Salaries have not been paid for six months, while no worker has been promoted in the last six years.

“The workers have also said that the traditional annual increments, as required by the civil service, have not been effected in the last six years.

“In the last two years, there was no month that salaries were paid in full. When workers are lucky to get paid, it is either 35, 40, or 50 per cent. This situation has impoverished the workers and reduced them to helpless paupers,” he said.

Maku said that the non-payment of salaries had made it difficult to cope with the current economic recession, and urged government to settle workers’ dues to enable them meet basic commitments.

“Government has no reason to owe workers and pensioners after collecting bail-out funds, Paris Club refunds, several loans, monies from the federation account and internally generated revenue,” he argued.

Maku, however, called on Nasarawa State residents to pray for divine intervention toward ending the current economic hardship, and urged them to love one another irrespective of tribe, religion or political affiliation.

NAN reports that workers in the state have been on strike since May 12, over the non-payment of salaries, lack of promotion and other issues bordering on welfare.

ALSO READ: Nasarawa Governor urges workers to call off strike

Governor Al-makura has, however, rejected suggestions that government had been insensitive to the plight of the workers, declaring that the contending issues were being addressed.

Al-Makura, who said that the strike was called off after government met with the workers’ leadership, urged the civil servants to report to their duty posts.

“As far as I am concerned, the strike has been called off. Anyone still staying off from his or her duty post is doing so at his or her own risk,” he said. 

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