By Ola Ajayi
Ekiti workers’ strike: Trade unions appeal to labour. The striking workforce in Ekiti State have been urged to sheath their sword and show understanding with Governor Ayodele Fayose as their colleagues in other states of the federation have done. A group, under the aegis of concerned trade unions in Ekiti, which comprises the state’s chapters of the National Union of Road Transport Workers (NURTW), Road Transport Employers Association of Nigeria, (RTEAN) Ajegboro Association, Cooperative Drivers Union, Okada Riders Association, NATA, and artisans among others, made the call yesterday with a promise to stage a solidarity rally in support of the Governor today.
In a statement co-signed by the leaders of the unions who include Clement Adekola, state chairman of NURTW, Agbede Gbenga, Mr. Agbede Gbenga, RTEAN chairman, Mr. Tosin Atowoja, Ajegboro Association, Elder Johnson Abioye, Cooperative Drivers Union,
Mr. Niyi J.O, Okada Riders Chairman, Mr. Alo Babatope, Chairman, NATA, Mr. J.O Adu, chairman, Artisans, the unions said: “We appeal to the striking labour, Ekiti State, to immediately suspend the strike and we want them to see reasons with the government. “There is a difference between what is at hand and what you don’t have. The governor has been transparent with the labour by taking them along with details of the federal allocations coming into the state. “ It is obvious that Ekiti, like other 28 states in Nigeria challenged by payment of salaries, does not have the money to meet the current demands of Ekiti labour. “
Citing another example of Benue State labour unions who in spite of being owed over 13 months salary, still maintained industrial harmony in the state, the concerned Ekiti unions further urged the striking workers to emulate the understanding gesture of their colleagues, saying: “Without doubt, they (Ekiti labour) have a right to their wages, but when you don’t have, you can’t give. In the South-West for instance, there are states owing more than Ekiti as a result of their lean purse and the labour in those states show understanding and cooperation with their government, why is Ekiti an exception?. Do we assume this has a political undertone?