By Ushang Ewa and Nandi Bette
Staff of the Obudu mountain resort have written Governor Ben Ayade of Cross River State threatening to begin a comprehensive industrial action by next week if issues concerning their owed salaries and allowances among others are not resolved before then.
This comes a few days after the staff chased the Special Assistant to Governor Ayade on Ranch matters, Ability Akwaji from the ranch for similar reasons.
In a letter dated 30th November 2017 and titled: “Seven (7) Days Notice Of Strike Action To Resolve A ‘Bargaining Impasse’ At Obudu Mountain Resort” the staff under the aegis of National Union of Hotel and Personnel Service Workers said they were bringing to Mr. Ayade’s notice the outstanding issues which his representatives have intended to resolve but due to promises unkept may lead to another strike.
The letter signed by the branch Chairman, Comrade Johnson Akon and the Secretary General, Comrade Emmanuel Odey said they have written three prior notices and have received no favorable response.
These includes a 21 days notice of strike action dated May 1, 2017; a 14 days notice and reminder dated May 22, 2017 as well as a 7 days notice and final reminder.
The outstanding issues include: non payment of salaries for four months in 2014; non payment of leave allowance from 2014 to date; non payment of salaries for five months in 2017; non payment of medical refund from 2014 to date; non payment of bonus from 2014 to date; non payment of union check-off dues which has amounted to over NGN12 million; non payment of death/retired staff benefits and non remittance of pension deduction from April 2014 to January 2017.
The letter added that: “Sir, we wish to bring to your notice that the staff of Obudu Mountain Resort have resolved that if these issues are not resolved within the above stated period we will be forced with no other option than to embark on an industrial action effective from 7th December 2017.”
This action comes hours after it was announced that Governor Ayade had paid December salaries on November 30 which received mixed reactions from the public.
Meanwhile, CrossRiverWatch gathered Mr. Akwaji’s chase which happened some 48 hours before the strike notification was borne out of the anger following the payment of only one month salary out of the several months owed.
Several calls to his line were not taken.
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