Governor Abubakar Sani Bello of Niger State has approved the restoration of annual leave grant to civil servants in the state with effect from this year.
The state Chairman, Nigeria Labour Congress (NLC), Comrade Yahaya Idris Ndako confirmed this development while speaking in an exclusive interview with Newsline on Sunday, Monday, at the Labour House, IBB Road, Minna.
Comrade Ndako said, the approval by the governor was in fulfilment of the promise he made to the organised labour and for the demands presented to him on the occasion of this year’s Workers’ Day celebration recently held at 123 field, Minna.
He maintained that the restoration of the leave grant to civil servants was based on series of appeals made to the governor on the issue to see reason why it should not be suspended in the first place.
The NLC Chairman, acknowledged the effort of the Head of Service (HoS), Alh. Yabagi Sule whose memo in this regard, had helped tremendously towards the success of their struggle for the restoration, adding that with this approval, the payment is going to be spread throughout the year and that since the year is almost five months away, it is likely that the payment will commerce in the next one or two months, as every detail to this effect will be contained in the circular that will be released soon by the state government regarding the payment schedule.
Comrade Ndako while applauding the effort of the governor for not disappointing the organised labour on this matter, equally disclosed to Newsline on Sunday that Mr. Governor has also approved the payment of 35 per cent salary increase to workers on Grade Level in the state as part of fulfilment of the request made by NLC to which, he said, the HoS had since written a memo on this and had forwarded it to the governor for necessary action.
Meanwhile, NLC Chairman has faulted the 14-man committee set up by Mr. Governor on minimum wage in the state, saying that the governor lacked the power to set up such committee.
According to him, the tripatite committee are still working and therefore, the committee set up by Mr. Governor was not necessary for now, and advised that the committee suspends its work to avoid jeorpadising the outcome of the tripatite committee, as the issue of new national minimum wage was purely a federal government matter and of Nigeria Labour Congress.
Speaking on the refund of 7.5% Contributory Pension Scheme to the beneficiaries who were exempted from the new pension scheme, Comrade Yahaya Idris Ndako said, necessary arrangements were on top gear by the state government to pay them as soon as the on-going documentation and process by the Pension Board was concluded.
Against this back ground, he said, the state Pension Board has directed all the affected beneficiaries that fall under the old pension scheme to submit their particulars to the board such as bank account numbers, PFA’s pin no, along with other documents for necessary action.