As Nigerian workers marked Workers’ Day on Monday, mixed reactions have continued to trail the celebration across the country.
In Katsina, no fewer than 500 youths took to the street in solidarity for the President Muhammadu Buhari’s war against corrupt practices.
From Katsina Government Reserved Areas and Round-About to the Emir of Katsina’s palace in the centre of the city, the youth held rally, wielding placards with inscriptions to discourage corruption.
The spokesmen of the Amalgamated Youths for Good Governances, Peace and Development, Abdullahi Aliyu, the organisers of the rally said in Katsina that the aim was to condemned corrupt practices in its totality in the country.
“We shall continue to support Baba Buhari anti-corruption campaign in order to liberate Nigeria from corruption,’’ he said.
“The president cannot fight the corruption war alone, we have to support him with all our heart to win the battle,’’ he said
In Zamfara, the government said that it would employ 1,000 holders of the National Certificate of Education (NCE) before the end of this year to address the problems of inadequate teachers in the primary schools in the state.
Gov. AbdulAziz Yari of the state made the announcement while speaking at the 2017 May Day celebration in Gusau.
He said the occasion came at the right time when the negotiations between state government and leaders of the Nigeria Labour Congress in the state over workers rights had gone far.
“The state government will pay all workers outstanding promotions and annual increments in this month of May.
“The state government had also reached agreement with the labor union to pay N100 million monthly for payment of gratuities to retired civil servants.
“We have agreed to form a committee that will review the issue of pension to ensure attainment of the minimum wage on pensions,’’ he said.
He commended the labour union in the state over their cooperation and understanding with the state government to address workers rights.
Similarly Gov. Akinwumi Ambode of Lagos State urged workers to rededicate themselves to the values of commitment and understanding which had ensured industrial harmony in the state.
He reiterated his commitment toward advancing their course to enhance productivity and urged them to continue to show understanding in the quest for welfare of their members.
According to him, any industrial unrest will compound the economic situation of the state and the country.
Ambode promised to build a secretariat for the union and assured the workers that the proposed plan to phase out the yellow coloured commercial buses in the state would not lead to job losses.
On minimum wage, the governor disclosed that negotiation had begun.
Mr Idowu Adelakun, Chairman NLC and Mr Francis Ogunremi, Chairman, Trade Union Congress, nonetheless, highlighted the need for a special adviser on labour matters.
They also appealed to the governor to ensure that the increase in Internally Generated Revenue impacted positively on civil servants.
The workers defied the downpour on Monday and engaged in the march past in enthusiasm.
In another development, a chieftain of the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP), in Kwara, Alhaji Hakeem Lawal, has commended the dedication and perseverance of Nigerian workers in the face of the economic crisis facing the country.
In his message to Nigerian workers on the occasion of the Workers’ Day in Ilorin on Monday, he commended the workers for their understanding during the hard time Nigeria was facing.
“I call on Nigerian workers to redouble their efforts in bringing the country out of the present economic recession,’’ he added.
The PDP chieftain advised both Federal and state governments to always give priority attention to welfare of workers in the country.
“Government should compensate Nigerian workers as soon as the nation’s economy improves because they have paid a lot of prize and sacrifice for the country during this recession,’’ Lawal said.