By Jeremiah Archibong
The Nigeria Labor Congress, NLC Cross River State Chapter has officially suspended its three days old industrial action.
The union took the decision this afternoon in Calabar when they met at the Nigeria Civil Service Union House at No. 5 Ndidem Usang Iso road, Calabar.
Speaking to our reporter immediately after the meeting, the State NLC Chairman Comrade John Ushie, revealed that the reason behind suspending the strike is because the State Government has agreed to the union’s terms.
His words: “We’ve just finished from the meeting with the congress and we read the MoU to them and they all made their inputs and they’ve all agreed to the MoU that we should go back and formally sign the MoU with the Government and formally suspend the strike with effect from today so that work will resume tomorrow.
“Government has agreed to look at the issue of gratuity and pension for the retirees and they have also agreed to pay back all deductions and it has commenced payment of the deduction to the beneficiaries. And government has also accepted that they will pay the arrears of salaries to workers, MDA’s and parastatals that they are owing including CRUTECH to enable them clear off their piled up salaries.
“The newly recruited health workers will be paid their salary, for 9 months that they have not been paid. We are on the verge of going to the government with the MoU to sit on a round table and sign the MoU to officially suspend the strike”, he concluded.
It will be recalled that the Deputy Governor of the State, Professor Ivara Esu after a meeting with the state labor leaders today told Journalists that: “We have unanimously agreed on all the matters and labor will address the congress so the strike can be called off. We must have the spirit of give and take. We did not start this negotiation now, throughout the weekend, Friday we have been on it where we met with some of their leaders and today, all the leaders were brought together for us to finally dot the I’s and cross the T’s. We have done that now and I think everybody is satisfied”.
The Cross River State Chairman of the Nigeria Labor Congress, Comrade John Ushie, also told CrossRiverWatch after the meeting with the Deputy Governor in his office earlier this morning that they were going back to their office to brief Congress and present before it the draft Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) with the state government and if the congress approves the draft MoU, they will come back and sign the agreement reached with the state government, and then proceed to call off the strike.
Having briefed the congress a while ago and securing their approval, the strike has now been formally suspended and workers are to resume work from tomorrow.
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