By Peter Duru
The Nigeria Labour Congress, NLC, has urged the Benue State government to urgently address the issue of excess taxation of workers in the state service to avert a crisis and a strain in Labour-Government relationship.
Labour regretted that despite repeated pleas to the state government to address the issue, no concrete step had been taken on the side of government to address the anomaly.
This call was made by the chairman of the Benue State chapter of the NLC, Comrade Simon Achaver, when the executive members of the congress paid a courtesy call on Governor Gabriel Suswam in Makurdi.
Achaver explained that the leadership of labour in the state would continue to maintain a culture of meaningful dialogue and understanding at all times on state matters without allowing it to degenerate to unacceptable levels, advising that government also toe the same line.
On Labour House
The labour leader urged the state government to aid the congress erect its Labour House in Makurdi, the state capital, which he promised would be named after Governor Suswam if completed.
In his remarkson the occasion, Governor Suswam pledged to construct an ultra modern Labour House for the Benue State chapter of the NLC before he leaves office.
In addition, Suswam also promised to allot a dedicated plot of land to organised labour in order to enable the
NLC erect a labour village in Makurdi.
The governor, who regretted that the present office accommodation being used by NLC as state secretariat was not befitting enough, assured that the present administration would put up a befitting secretariat for the congress.
He commended the Comrade Simon Achaver-led executives of the NLC for its understanding and friendly disposition towards his administration which, according to him, has created conducive working environment in the state.
On problems arising from the newly introduced e-payment system in the state, Suswam who agreed that they wereÂ teething problems, called on NLC to appeal to workers to bear it for now as government was working round the clock to bring a lasting solution to the problem.
Among the issues raised by the visiting labour team included promotion for public officers, electronic payment, multipurpose and cooperative schemes deduction/check off dues, examination administration allowance, review of weigh in and shift duty allowance, national housing fund, pending NUT strike and training and re-training of the stateâ€™s workforce.