The Nigeria Labour Congress in Ekiti State has threatened to embark on strike if Governor Ayo Fayose fails to pay them two months’ salaries and pensions from when he receives July allocation.
The position of the workers was stated on Thursday by the Chairman of the NLC in the state, Ade Adesanmi.
Adesanmi, who accused the state government of withholding information on Internally Generated Revenue, said:
“When the inability to pay salaries began, the present government came with an option of downsizing the workforce or allowing two months’ allocations to be added to pay one month’s salaries.
“In the interest of our people, we took the second option.
“As labour leaders, we are supposed to be apolitical and that position we maintain till now.
“Now, the election has come and gone but the pitiable situation of our members occasioned by the non-payment of salaries and pension of senior citizens still persist and it is worrisome.
“Letters have been written to the outgoing government to set the machinery in motion for the payment of backlog of arrears of salaries and pensions to fulfil its promise not to leave Ekiti as a debtor.
“This time, we want to hold Governor Fayose to his words.
“Workers are dying, pensioners are dying and the governor, as a father to all, should ensure that our pains are relieved as soon as possible.
“We have suggested that from the July allocation, the government should mop up all funds and start paying two months’ salaries, the failure which labour may not be able to guarantee industrial peace and harmony in Ekiti.”
UK Reopens Visa Application Centres In Nigeria
The United Kingdom High Commission has announced the reopening of its visa application centres in Nigeria.
This is coming barely one week after it shut down its visa application centres in Victoria Island, Abuja and Lagos over the crisis arising from #EndSARS protests in the country.
The UK made this known in a statement on its Twitter.
It noted, however, that its centres would not open on Thursday due to the public holiday in Nigeria for Maolud Nabbiyy.
The notice was titled ‘update on UK visa application centres in Nigeria’.
Part of the notice read, “Our TLS contact visa application centres are now open in Nigeria. Following the recent closures, we are working hard to process all outstanding applications.
“We thank you for your continued patience and understanding. Please note Thursday, October 29, is a public holiday in Nigeria and our Visa application centres will be closed.”
Meanwhile, a judicial panel in Lagos on Tuesday began an inquiry into the shooting of peaceful protesters last week and broader police brutality that had sparked demonstrations and unrest.
The state had been rocked by violence since demonstrators were gunned down in the economic hub on October 20, sparking international outrage and rioting.
Amnesty International says 12 people were shot dead by the police and army at two locations, in assaults shared widely on social media.
The #EndSARS protests in the state drew support from celebrities around the globe and turned into one of the biggest challenges to the governing elite in years.
Overall, Amnesty International says 56 people have died nationwide since the demonstrations began.
The situation has calmed in Lagos since days of rioting but looting and violence rumbles on in pockets around the country.
Communal Clash: Sanwo-Olu Reads Riot Act To Miscreants In Lagos, Promises To Compensate Victims Of Faagba Ethnic Violence
Lagos State Governor, Mr. Babajide Sanwo-Olu has read a riot act to miscreants and hoodlums in Lagos, urging them to be law-abiding and peaceful or face the full wrath of the law.
Speaking during a visit to Faagba in Ifako-Ijaiye Local Government Area of Lagos State to assess the level of destruction of properties caused by last week’s ethnic clash between Yoruba and Hausa community in the area, Governor Sanwo-Olu said the State Government would be hard and very decisive on miscreants if they refuse to turn a new leaf.
Governor Sanwo-Olu, who was accompanied by his deputy, Dr. Obafemi Hamzat; Secretary to the State Government (SSG), Mrs. Folasade Jaji, Special Adviser to the Governor on Education, Mr. Tokunbo Wahab and Head of Service, Mr. Hakeem Muri-Okunola, assured residents of Faagba who were affected by the ethnic clashes that Lagos State Government would assist to alleviate their pains.
He said: “The level of destruction that I have seen here is colossal; it is unfortunate. Enumeration would start immediately by the two local governments. The council chairmen and all the community leaders will come together and come up with a list of those whose properties have been destroyed.
“The security operatives are here; they can hear everything. We are using this opportunity to give notices to all the miscreants in the neighbourhood and that is why I am looking at you.
“If you know that you are not doing any work and that you are one of the people that have caused this trouble, we are giving you the final notice because we are coming to clear this whole place.”
Stressing the need for miscreants to vacate Faagba, Governor Sanwo-Olu said: “We are coming to clear this whole place and we will make sure that you do not disturb or harass the peace-loving people that we have in this neighborhood. We have a Hausa community, Igbo community, and Yoruba community and they are living well.
“You need to look for what to do; we will not allow you to come and tarnish the image and the peace that we have in Fagba and in Lagos State as a whole.
“We will make sure that we also come and see what we can do to help the youth. And once we do that, we are giving you an opportunity to remain law-abiding and be peaceful. If not, we will be hard and be very decisive on all of you.”
Speaking on his administration’s readiness to assist those affected by the violence, which led to the destruction of properties worth billions of naira in Ifako-Ijaiye Local Government Area and Ojokoro Local Council Development Area, Governor Sanwo-Olu said the State Government will not leave the people to bear their pains alone.
He said: “Please let peace reign among us here. That is why I have to come here myself today and I have seen the destruction and it is a big shame on all of us. I want to appeal, please let peace reign. Let us live like brothers and sisters in Lagos.
“We will do the compensation as soon as we get the breakdown of the enumeration. We might not be able to give you all the full benefits but we will ensure that we do not leave you alone.
“Please let’s be sincere about it. If you don’t have more than two shops in this place, don’t say you have eight. If you don’t have more than two rooms, don’t say you have nine rooms. That is the only way the government can assist well and we can help.
“I have come here to see things myself and I can assure you that we will not leave you alone. I can assure you that we will not leave you to bear the pains alone. The government will come and we will try and help out.”
Speaking earlier, the chairmen of Ifako-Ijaiye LGA, Hon. Oloruntoba Oke and his Ojokoro counterpart, Hon. Hammed Tijani, as well as leaders of the Yoruba and Hausa communities, appealed to Governor Sanwo-Olu to assist them in ensuring that the Faagba area is rid off of miscreants, who according to them are the architects of several violence and disturbances in the area.
SARS Tortured Me For 47 Days, Extracted My Teeth, Sold My Properties —- Victim Tells Lagos Panel
The Panel of Inquiry and Restitution set up by the Lagos State Government to look into cases of human rights abuse by men of the recently-disbanded Special Anti-Robbery Squad (SARS) opened the hearing on Tuesday with four cases.
First was the case of one Mr Okoliagu Abunike, a father of five, who narrated to the retired Justice Doris Okuwobi-led panel how he was in 2012 arrested by policemen from Ojo Police Station at the instance of his boss, who accused him of embezzling the company’s funds.
According to him, the cops at the Ojo Police Station, after beating and humiliating him by tearing his clothes and parading him around Alaba Market, handed him over to SARS men, who detained him at Ikeja for 47 days.
He said men of SARS, including one Inspector Sunday, alias Baba Ijapa; and one ASP Haruna, tortured him so much so that two of his teeth were extracted.
Abunike said, “My family didn’t know where I was. When they eventually knew and my mother and wife came to the SARS office in Ikeja, they beat up my mother and wife in my presence.
“While I was in detention, they took over my house, they sold all my properties, including my Acura jeep, 17KVA generator, my inverter, my three blackberry phones, and my land.”
He said after spending 47 days in SARS cell, he was hurriedly charged before a magistrates’ court after a lawyer hired by his family wrote a petition.
Abunike said on getting out of detention he filed a fundamental rights suit and Justice Ibrahim Buba of the Federal High Court in Lagos in 2016 awarded N10m damages in his favour against the police and his former boss.
Abunike, however, said four years after the judgment, all efforts to enforce it and claim the money had proved abortive.
Asked whether the magistrate court found him guilty of any crime, Abunike answered in the negative.
The panel admitted a copy of Justice Buba’s N10m judgment as an exhibit and said its decision would be made know in seven days.
The second case was that of one Ndukwe Ekekwere, who was brought to the hearing in a wheelchair by his mother.
Though his case could not be heard by the panel on the grounds that the SARS operative, who is the accused in the case was absent, Ekekwere told our correspondent that he became paralyzed and was confined to a wheelchair after he was pushed off a two-storey building in 2008 by men of SARS.
While adjourning the case till November 2, 2020, Justice Okuwobi said although she noted the difficulty in bringing the man in the wheelchair to the hearing venue, it was necessary for the panel to give the accused SARS operative an opportunity for a fair hearing.
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