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Monetisation: Public Sector Workers Begin Strike

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December 05, 2005/Source ThisDay




Activities in federal  government agencies and parastatals may be  paralysed this morning as public sector workers resumed a  nationwide strike to protest the non implementation of monetisation policy two years after it was approved.

The strike which is expected to affect thirty three state agencies is the second in three months following government failure to honour the agreement reached between it and the workers on the  implementation modalities.

The three major public sector unions spearheading the strike action are Amalgamated Union of Public Corporation, Civil Service Technical, Nigeria Union of Journalists and Radio, Television and Threater Workers.

The General Secretary of RATTAWU, Henry Odugula told our reporter last night on telephone the strike would commence in full scale today to demonstrate their anger against the attitude of  government towards the workers.

According to him, government had shown a lack of commitment to the extension of the policy to its agencies and parastatals contrary to the guideline.

More worrisome to the workers, according to Odugala, is that the  federal government had shown complete disdain to the agreement brokered by the national assembly which resulted in the suspension of the first phase of the strike.

\"We have resolved that the strike should commence this morning in all the 33 federal government agencies and parastatals. Unlike in the past, there will be no end to the action until the auditor general releases the cash backing for the payment of the benefits\" said Odugala.

Government commenced the implementaion in 2003 in the core civil service. Absence of uniformity in the implementation resulted in over 40 percent salary differentials between core civil servants and staff of the agencies.

Two weeks ago the workers staged a protest at the ministry of finance where the Minister was pelted with pure water satchet. Although no concrete agreement was reached the Minster promised to address the issue in no time.

Earlier before then, the Senate had expressed concern with the non implementation as well as the inability of the executive to implement agreement which it brokered.

Odugala said that no agencies would be spared of the strike nothing that appropriate officials involved in the released of the funds had been playing pranks.

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