By Ibrahim Ahmadu
Some council workers in Kogi State, on Monday, decried payment of their salaries through only one bank by the State Government.
Kogi State Government had moved salary accounts of all workers in the 21 local government areas of the state to only Access Bank Plc.
Some of the workers, who spoke at the premises of Access Bank in Lokoja on Monday, expressed dissatisfaction with the decision.
Mr Olaiya Ojuloye from Koton-Karfe Local Government Area said that he was highly disappointed with the development, “because of the untold hardships workers were going through.’’
He urged the state government to return them to their former banks in order to quickly access their salaries because they had suffered a lot.
Ojuloye noted that it was only half salaries of three months that were credited into their accounts in Koton-Karfe LGA and not full salaries as claimed by the state government.
Mr Lawal Aminu, from Ajaokuta Local Government Area, said that the sufferings the workers were going through were too much.
“Most of us have been here before 6 a.m., but none of us has been attended to.
“This crowd is just too much for the bank to manage even the security men cannot do anything to help the situation; we are tired of the whole thing,” Aminu lamented.
He, however, said that it was three months’ full salaries of March, April and May that were credited into their accounts in Ajaokuta Local Government Area.
Another worker from Dekina LGA, Friday Ogijo, said the stressed they had been passing through was too much for them, calling on the government to find a lasting solution to it.
“You can see this huge crowd yourself, the procedure is abnormal and not acceptable to all of us.
“The situation is totally out of control, and we don’t know when this will end”, Ogijo said.
A worker in Ofu LGA, Mr Baba Suleiman, also lamented the stress he had been going through to get his salary.
According to him, he has been coming from Ofu to the bank in Lokoja since last week but yet to achieve success.
“The stress that workers are passing through is too much to bear, as this can have adverse effect on our health.
“A pregnant woman fainted here this morning and was rushed to hospital, we are yet to hear the outcome whether she will survive the trauma or not.
“We appeal to the state governor, Alhaji Yahaya Bello, to rescind his decision by returning us to our previous banks for easy access to our salaries”, Suleiman added.
“The situation in all the local governments is very pathetic; while some workers received full three months’ salaries, others received half salaries.
“As I talk to you, majority of the council workers’ accounts are yet to be credited; some received alert but on getting to the bank they met empty balance.
“It is so sad that we are being forced by the governor to go through this avoidable stress and hardships”, Ibrahim Jimoh, a staff of Dekina LGA said.
Mrs Ruth Obadu from Ofu LGA, commended the state government for the payment of their three months’ salary arrears.
She, however, urged the governor to find a lasting solution to the hardship the workers were going through before accessing their salaries.
Workers in Kogi embarked on indefinite strike on Monday, June 27, 2016, to protest over unpaid salary arrears and unresolved screening issues.
The demands of the workers included payment of salary arrears to civil servants, primary school teachers and local government workers.