Fear Of Sack Grips Kogi Workers As Govt. Releases Verification Report

Tension has gripped workers at state and local levels in Kogi following the release of an interim report of workers’ verification in the state.

The workers fear that no fewer than 10,000 among them might have been sacked by the state government.

The News Agency of Nigeria  learned in Lokoja on Monday that some workers in the local governments who could not find their names on the lists of genuine staff became apprehensive and others protested.

In Lokoja Local Government, where some 400 workers were affected , the workers blocked the main road in the town and disrupted vehicular and human movements for hours.

It took the intervention of a detachment of policemen to disperse them and clear the road of the bonfires they erected on the road.

In Okehi Local Government and Okene Local Government, workers waited for the list to know their fate.

Meanwhile, the state government insists that those protesting the interim report were not genuine workers.

“The protesters were not civil servants. Some of them who were interrogated by the security agents at the scene of protest could not produce their staff identity cards.

“The genuine local government workers that claimed to have been affected by the preliminary report of the screening have been told to channel their problem to the appropriate authority and they have started complying, “ a statement said.

The statement was signed by Alhaji Abdulkarim Abdulmalik , Special Adviser to the Governor on Media.

“ It has been confirmed that the motive behind the demonstration is to cause mayhem in the state.

“The screening exercise has yielded results and any right thinking persons in the state can attest to it,” the statement added.

It warned that anybody caught causing problem under any guise would face the full wrath of the law.

Meanwhile, the state President of the Nigeria Union of Local Government Employees ( NULGE), Mr Tom Abutu, has rejected the sack of members of the union.

Abutu said that the screening committee deviated from its term of reference.

He said that NULGE and other unions agreed to be art of the screening based assurances from the government that its outcome would not lead to retrenchment of workers.

Abutu who spoke to NAN by phone said that the leadership of organised labour had commenced a meeting to discuss the next line
of action.


( NAN)

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