31 August 2016
Gov. Tanko Al-Makura Image: www.onlinenigeria.com
The Nasarawa State government has agreed to pay compensation to relations of two workers who lost their lives during a rally over protracted labour crisis rocking the state.
The state’s Gov. Tanko Al-makura made this known during a reconciliatory meeting in Abuja on Tuesday.
The police shot four workers out of whom two later died in the rally staged on July 29.
The police shot the workers just as the Nigeria Labour Congress (NLC) began talks with the state government over the protracted labour crisis.
The NLC, the Trade Union Congress (TUC) and representatives of Nasarawa State Government attended the meeting facilitated by the Minister of Labour and Employment, Sen. Chris Ngige.
Al-makura, represented by Alhaji Yusuf Usman, Attorney-General and Commissioner for Justice, said the compensation would be according to the Employees Compensation Act.
He said the state government would invoke “no-work, no-pay” policy on the workers for the months of July and August.
He also said that the state government had since maintained the status quo, adding that both labour and government needed themselves.
“We have also agreed to pay the shortfall of the salaries during which the contentious new salary scale was implemented,’’ he said.
Earlier, the minister said President Muhammadu Buhari frowned at the situation in Nasarawa State.
“So, Mr President in consonance with his power, has mandated me to intervene with a view to resolving the crisis. More so, when the issue has resulted in the loss of two lives.
“He has asked me to do the needful so that we can get peace back to Nasarawa State,” he said.
Ngige said the gathering was the Federal Government’s first leg of conciliatory meeting, adding that it had become necessary because the in-house mediation had failed.
The minister described the death of the two workers as unfortunate.
He said he was open to listen to the officials and government of Nasarawa State, take their brief and all supporting documents, after which he would meet with the NLC and TUC in the same way.
“If we discover that the workers did not take procedural steps to embark on strike, it has its own penalties,’’ Ngige said.
The NLC President, Ayuba Wabba, noted that employment was a contract where both employers and employees have their rights.
He said it was unfortunate that the state government allowed the crisis to escalate, adding that NLC and TUC tried