By Festus Ahon
UGHELLIâ€”ACTIVITIES of the Ughelli North local government council, Delta State, have been grounded, as workers of the council yesterday embarked on indefinite strike over non payment of their salaries for the last three months.
Addressing reporters at the council secretariat, chairman of the local government chapter of the Nigeria Union of Local Government Employees (NULGE), Comrade Omo-Ohwo Ijolo, said the welfare of the council workers was paramount to the leadership of the union.
Ijolo said the strike would continue until the three months backlog of salaries owed the workers was paid and attributed the non-payment of the salaries to the freezing of the councilâ€™s account by the councillors of the local government council.
According to him, the councilors allegedly froze the account over non-payment of their furniture allowance of about N1.2 million each to the twenty councilors from the twenty wards of the council area.
He said the union was not against the payment of furniture allowance to the councillors, but insisted that it should not be paid to the detriment of the workers.Reacting to the strike, the council chairman, Mr. Kenneth Ibru, said the strike was uncalled for, since the PDP leadership in Delta Central Senatorial district has waded into the matter, with a view to getting the councilors to de-freeze the councilâ€™s account that was frozen by them.
Ibru, who spoke through his Personal Assistant, Mr. Jacob Itelu, appealed to the striking workers to call off the strike in the interest of the general well being of the council. Effort made to reach the leader of the legislative arm, Chief Joseph Obomiata, on telephone proved abortive as he declined comment.