Workers of the Obingwa local council of Abia state yesterday embarked on a protest march over alleged delay in the payment of their February and part of January 2013 salaries as well as arrears of promotion and Leave allowances.
The workers who gathered at the premises of the Nigerian Television Authority, Ogbor Hill, Aba called for the transfer of their Head of Administration, Mr. Ben Nwogu and the Acting Treasurer, Nwaogute Joy, accusing them of withholding the salaries released by the state government.
‘We appeal to Gov. Theodore Orji to transfer our Head of Administration, Mr. Ben Nwogu and Treasurer; they are against the good policies of the state government”; “Favouritism has become the order in the 2012 promotion arrears in Obingwa LGA”; ‘The HOS and Treasurer have failed our hardworking governor,” some of the placards on display read.
A worker who gave his name as Chima said the delay in the payment of their salaries has made life difficult for them and appealed to the governor to come to their aid.
247ureports.com gathered that the workers are also demanding the payment of their 2009 and 2010 promotion arrears, amongst other demands.
When contacted, the Head of Administration of the council, Mr. Ben Nwogu said he was unaware of the protest but stated that the council has been unable to pay the February salaries and leave allowances due to a garnishee order obtained by a lawyer who did some legal services for the council.
“We owe our legal Adviser and he went to court and obtained a judgment against us. The problem is not with the management of the council. The Ministry of Justice has appointed a lawyer who is defending the council, it is a court issue, we are talking with the lawyer and the Ministry, until it is settled, we can’t do anything,” he lamented.
He accused the union officials of causing disaffection in the council and called on the workers to be patient as there are other councils such as Ikwuano, Osisoma Ngwa, Arochukwu, Ukwa West, who were also affected by the problem of court order and are being resolved.
“The Ministry of Local Government and that of Justice has taken p the matter, it will soon be resolved; the workers should refuse to be used to cause problems. The NULGE executives at the council are embarrassing the council and state government. They are a group of miscreants,” he said.