Crisis Looms In Cross River Over Delayed Promotion

Crisis Looms In Cross River Over Delayed Promotion
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By Patrick Odey, Calabar.

Indications have emerged that public workers in Cross River state are spoiling for another showdown with the Ben Ayade-led government over delayed promotion.

It was learnt that the workers not satisfied with the romance between the leadership of the state chapter the Nigerian Labour Congress (NLC),and and the State Civil Service Commission, have initiated several moves to press for their demand.

The workers, who spoke under the aegis of Amalgamated Joint Union, chided the state leadership of the Nigeria Labour Congress (NLC) for betraying their cause and not fighting for promotion and welfare of workers in the state.

The leader of the Union Joseph Ekpe who spoke on the fate of workers while interacting with Journalists in Calabar said” workers have been expecting their promotion since last year, but the commission, in connivance with labour leaders, has continued to delay it for whatever reason.”

“We the Amalgamated Joint Union are out to protect the interest of workers in the state.  We are members of the NLC but because our leaders have sold us out, we have decided to take our fate in our hands by warning the Civil Service Commission to henceforth facilitate our promotion.”

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“We went on a statewide strike last year as NLC because of this promotion exercise but now, our leaders have connived with the commission to stall our promotion because some of them have received their promotion to level sixteen and their salaries are running.

“ We see this as a serious betrayal because the essence of trade unionism is to serve the interest of members and not otherwise,” Ekpe said.

According to him, this is the first time in the history of the state promotion of workers “will take eternity” to effect, threatening that workers will revolt if the delay becomes unbearable.

“Many workers have not been promoted for eight to ten years and the governor gave the go ahead for the commission to undertake the exercise but up till now, the commission is telling all kinds of stories after we have spent so much in terms of time and money.

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“  We are surprised that the leadership of NLC in the state is quiet over this gross misconduct by the commission,” he noted.

Ekpe therefore, appealed to Governor Ben Ayade to intervene in order to save the state another round of strike, accusing both the commission and the leadership of NLC of frustrating the growth of workers in the state.

But the chairman of the State Civil Service Commission, Mary Obanya who spoke to our correspondent on the issue, said the promotion process has not stopped, blaming it on the workload the commission has had to grapple with.

“We are working tirelessly to ensure that the promotion of civil servants in the state is carried out.  We have quite a lot to do here and you must understand that apart from promotion, the commission has other duties it is performing.

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“But we are working day and night to ensure that all deserving civil servants are promoted,” she said.

She blamed some MDAs for the delay in the promotion process, saying some of the government agencies turned in their score sheet late which, she claimed, has affected the overall process.

On his part, the state chairman of NLC  John Ushie said the leadership of the Council was monitoring the process, arguing that the commission was working to ensure that all deserving  workers were promoted.


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