KOGI Non-Governmental Organisations Network (KONGONET), has appealed to the state government to take urgent steps to end industrial dispute with the organised labour in the interest of the people and the state.
Mr Victor Adejoh, state Chairman of the network, made the appeal in an interview with the News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) on Thursday in Lokoja.
Adejoh said there was also the need to end the “grand-standing” posture of both government and labour over the three-week old strike by the state workforce to ensure peace and industrial harmony in the state.
“As it stands, the economy of the state is in jeopardy and the worst hit is the ordinary people who both sides claim to be fighting for and defending their interest,” he said.
Adejoh,who said Gov. Yahaya Bello’s government was pragmatic enough to have set out a New Direction policy for the state, however, urged government to take quick steps, through social decision-making process, to make it work.
“There is need to invite all aggrieved actors and institutions back to the dialogue table to resolve the impasse amicably. Both sides must make some sacrifices for the state to move forward.
“It is the traditional role of NGOs and Civil Society Organisations to voice out at times like this.’’
”This is because they know the negative impact lack of public service has on the citizens and the burden of underdevelopment and poverty that arise from such situation.
“We call on government and all stakeholders in all striking institutions in Kogi to stop grand-standing and return to the dialogue table.
“There must be a way out of the current challenges; we must give room for transformation. End the grand-standing now and let Kogi move forward.”
Labour claimed that over 30 per cent of the state workforce was being owed 21 months salary arrears; 20 per cent of which owed between 11 and 18 months.
It also claimed that about 45 per cent of the workers took salaries up till July. (NAN)