- Recruitments, promotions, minimum wage, loans, labour secretariats
Workers in Rivers State have welcomed the packages announced for them on May Day. The labour leaders told newsmen that they believed that the governor would carry out all the promises he made because he is known to fulfill promises.
The workers jumped for joy all through Wednesday, May Day, when the Rivers State government unfolded packages meant to reduce suffering and unemployment in the oil state.
Top on the packages is lifting of ban on recruitment into the state’s civil service. The recruitment into the Rivers State University was approved a week earlier and is now in progress. Other mouth watering packages announced at the Yakubu Gowon International Stadium are lifting of embargo on promotions, readiness to pay new minimum wage, N100m loan fund to civil servants in the state, and construction of secretariats to two labour unions.
Represented by his deputy, Ipalibo Harry Banigo, the governor said the chairman of the Civil Service Commission had already been directed to conduct interviews and effect the promotion of Civil Servants to their next salary grades, noting that he has also approved the recruitment of Rivers indigenes to fill existing vacancies as part of efforts to strengthen the Civil Service for effective service delivery to the Rivers People.
Governor Wike said the government under his watch is committed to tackling social issues by creating the enabling environment for the private sector to create jobs and empower our youths.
He said: “We are also strengthening our educational system to ensure that our graduates are imbued with appropriate skills and the mindset to become job creators rather than job seekers and will also continue to implement effective policies and programmes that will address and lift our people from poverty to economic prosperity”.
The governor also disclosed that government has started implementing the N100m interest free-loan to civil servants in a bid to advance their welfare and wellbeing.
He promised to pay the new minimum wage as soon as he receives the official transmission from the Federal Government while noting that the Pension Reform Bill before the Rivers State House of Assembly when passed into law would bring into existence a seamless and positive scheme for workers in the State.
Wike who described his administration as worker-friendly one said despite financial challenges his administration is up to date in the payment of full salaries and pensions to working and retired civil servants, stressing that his promise to construct befitting secretariats for the state chapters of the Nigerian Labour Congress (NLC) and the Trade Union Congress (TUC) has been fulfilled and will soon be handed over.
In her address the state chairman of the NLC, the comrade, Beatrice Itubo, who congratulated Gov Wike and his deputy for their victory at the election said the election was a referendum on the performance of Governor Wike in the past four years, noting that the victory was an indication that a large number of the voting public in the state is happy with the governor.
Also speaking, the chairman of TUC, Comrade Austin Jonah, reiterated the commitment of the labour movement to continually seek improvement on existing working conditions of workers.
By Gladys Nweke