Ogun owes 84 months contributory pension deductions, say workers
The Chairman of the Nigeria Labour Congress (NLC), Ogun State chapter, Akeem Ambali has alleged that the state government was owing its workers 84 months contributory pensions and 15 months ‘global’ deductions amounting to N1.2 billion.
The global deductions, he said included Christmas/Ileya funds, departmental savings, remittances of bank loans and cooperative deductions, among others.The labour leader spoke when he led his executive members on a courtesy visit to the state chapter of the Nigerian Union of Journalists (NUJ) in Abeokuta.
His words: “As at today Ogun state is still owing the workers over 84 months contributory pensions deductions that are supposed to have been remitted to the various Pensions Fund Administrators (PFAs).
“This speaks volumes because the future of Ogun State workers who will be retiring at some point is doomed without the correct remittance of these funds to the PFAs.”
Ambali lamented that despite the Paris Club fund released to the states by the Federal Government to offset their workers’ salaries, “Ogun still remains the biggest debtor of contributory pensions deduction in the country.
“We are disturbed about this development that Ogun happens to be the biggest debtor when it comes to the issue of contributory pensions deductions. We are agitated because as at today the state government now owes 15 months global deductions and by the end of June, it will come to 16 months.”
Ambali also alleged that the state government was causing confusion among the labour unions and misinforming members of the public on the issues that led to the recent disagreement between the union and the government, saying the disagreement was politically motivated.
He called on the Federal Government and opinion leaders in the state to prevail on the state government to pay the deductions without further delay, “so that workers in the state will live comfortably.”
Ambali urged the workers and pensioners to participate in the on-going Continuous Voters’ Registration (CVR) exercise by the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) to enable them vote for candidates of their choice in the next general elections.
“Let us register. Our vote is our power. We want to speak in 2019 as a labour movement. We cannot continue to wait in the corner of our rooms and be lamenting. We want to key into the process of good governance so that we will be one of the major stakeholders that will contribute positively towards emergence of people driven, people-centred government in 2019,” Ambali said.
Speaking, Chairman of the NUJ, Wole Sokunbi assured Ambali of the union’s continued support, saying the NUJ and NLC are partners in the struggle for workers’ welfare.
He commended the labour leader for not relenting in his efforts to ensure that workers in the state get their due.Efforts to get the government’s reaction proved abortive as several phone calls to the Commissioner of Finance, Adewale Oshinowo were not taken, neither did he reply a text message sent to him.