…calls for removal of accounts from Sterling bank
*They’ve no say in choice of financial institution – KWSG
By Matthew Denis
The leadership of two most influential labour unions in Kwara State, Nigeria Labour Congress (NLC) and Trade Union Congress (TUC) have disagreed over ‘alert’ for June salary payment.
Recall that the Minister of Finance, Mrs. Kemi Adeosun had said that the Federal Account Allocation Committee (FAAC) is waiting to amend the poor remittance made into the federation account by the Nigeria National Petroleum Corporation (NNPC) before the various states would receive their monthly allocation.
In view of this, the Kwara State Government opted for alternate source to pay the salary of workers for the month of June, 2018, this medium gathered.
While some civil servants were said to have received alert of their June salary at the weekend others claimed they have received no such notification.
Speaking in separate telephone calls to our reporter last night, the Chairmen of labour unions in the state expressed divergent views on the situation.
In his words, the state NLC Chairman, Cmr. Yakeen Agunbiade said, “Despite the fact that we lauded the state government for taking step to pay the June salary through borrowing, I want to state that we are yet to receive alert up till now (Sunday).
“Nobody has received alert though we are hoping for tomorrow (Monday). The government said that they are borrowing money from Sterling bank to pay workers but as I speak to you none of the civil servants have been paid.”
On his part, the state Chairman of TUC, Cmr. Nasir Olumoh Kolawole said, “Some civil servants have started receiving salary alert for the month of June from the information I gathered.
“Some have received alert but it is yet to go round, I don’t know what the problem with Sterling bank is. The unfortunate scenario is that the state government needs to work on Sterling bank because the bank doesn’t have a platform for faster release of funds or dispensation of salary.
“The bank doesn’t have what it takes to get salary paid as quickly as possible. The bank needs software that will drive payment easily. This is what Ecobank has and an advantage, so government should work on it.
“Why is it that some people would have received alert and it is not the same situation with majority? We are not happy about this at all,” he said.
Cmr. Olumoh who is also the state Chairman of Senior Civil Servants called on the state government to maintain the status quo as generated by the financial consultant.
“The state government should ensure that this thing is done with the bank that has the platform so that immediately the bank clicks on that button everybody gets alert at the same time. As it is now the ministry of Finance should work tirelessly to ensure that Sterling bank pays majority of people because even me that I’m talking now, I am yet to receive alert.”
Meanwhile, the Kwara Commissioner of Finance, Alhaji Nurudeen Ademola Banu has chided the labour unions stressing that they have no say in the choice of financial institution to dispense workers salary.
He said, “Some of the civil servants have seen alert while the remaining ones will receive alert on Monday. Workers called Saturday during a radio programme that they have seen alert.
“The civil servants have no business with the bank that pays their salary. They are just playing politics because they are not supposed to tell us what to do and what not to do as it is not part of their responsibility.
“They are going beyond their mandate what’s their business with the bank? Are they running the state for the government? Did they even know whether we have enough money? The most important thing is that people have started receiving money now.”
Banu however said the labour unions should rather applaud the state government for being among few states in the federation that is paying workers despite not receiving its June federal allocation yet.