From our correspondents
Mallam Ali Gangaria, 72-year old pensioner with Taraba State Government, yesterday, slumped during a march by the state chapter of the Nigerian Union of Pensioners (NUP), as part of activities celebrating May Day in the state.
He was taken to the Federal Medical Centre Jalingo for medical attention. Taraba is owing pensions and gratuities amounting to over N15 billion.
Speaking at the occasion which held at the Jolly Nyame Stadium in Jalingo, the state governor Arch Darius Ishaku said payment of pensions and gratuities was one of the major challenges of his government and called on pensioners to exercise pension as their entitlements would be paid when “the economy improves”.
In Lagos, Governor, Akinwunmi Ambode insisted that the ban of yellow buses, known as Danfo, is envitable, but assured such move would not lead to joblessness.
The governor said this, yesterday, during the 2017 May Day rally at Agege Stadium, where he explained that the ban will make Lagos a more beautiful city. He was responding to the state chairman of the Nigeria Labour Congress (NLC), Comrade Idowu Adelakun, who had pleaded with the state government to reconsider its stand on the proposed ban. The NLC chairman said the removal of the buses will add more to the current hardship of common people of Lagos, whose means of livelihood rested on the buses. But, in response to the NLC request, Ambode said the ban was not meant to throw them out of job, but to improve the beauty of the state.
His words: “What is of paramount interest to this government is to make sure every Lagosian has a comfortable means of moving from one point to the other”.
Meanwhile, Ekiti State chapter of the NLC has urged President Muhammadu Buhari to, as a matter of urgency, fulfil his campaign promises “before Nigerians are pushed to the wall.”
The state’s NLC chairman, Comrade Raymond Ade Adesanmi, made the remarks yesterday during the Workers’ Day celebration held at the Oluyemi Kayode Staidum in Ado-Ekiti, state capital.
Head of service, Ekiti State, Mr. Olg benga Faseluka also praised Governor Ayodele Fayose for his “favourable disposition to the welfare of workers in our state.”
Adesanmi commended Fayose for speaking against all forms of oppression represented by destructive activities of herdsmen, reducing crime rate in the state, attending to workers’, teachers’ welfare and promoting over 15,000 workers in arrears
Appreciating the workers for their patience and perseverance, Fayose said: “I have taken time to listen to your demands. It has been the same, your welfare and we’ll being, the only thing I have added is taking you along in everything. I have not hidden anything from you.
I am a governor who lays bare all the allocation coming to states to labour leaders every month, so you can defend me when the need arises.
No governor would come after me and abolish that transparency legacy I am leaving behind. During my first term, I used to pay your workers on the 25th of every month. It is because of the debts left behind by past administration. I don’t want to dwell on past errors and I promise you, I won’t owe a kobo by the time I will be leaving office.”
In celebration of workers’ day, National Chairman of Peoples Democratic Party (PDP), Senator Ali Modu Sheriff, said the party will pay reasonable minimum wage to workers if it returned to power in 2019.
In a statement signed by his deputy, Dr Cairo Ojougboh, in Abuja, yesterday, Sheriff said: “When we take over power, we shall address minimum wage that will ensure workers’ pay will not only take them home, but will be able to also cater for the families and pay school fees. “We understand the difficulties the nation is going through at the moment, but a government can only be changed through the ballots.
“2019 will be another opportunity to change power; then, the workers will know what it means to have PDP back in power.”