[From ANIEKAN ANIEKAN, Calabar]
Angry workers in the Cross River civil service have protested 54 months unpaid salaries.
The workers stormed the office of the Head of Service (HoS) at the state Secretariat in Calabar chanting solidarity songs.
They carried various placards with different inscriptions such as; “Over 3 years without salary, who did we offend? Yet we go to work everyday,” “The injustice is too much,” “Labourer deserves his wages,” “Governor Ayade pls pay us our salary”.
One of the workers, David Iyaya lamented that they are aggrieved civil servants from various ministries, departments and agencies.
He said they were employed by the state government in 2018 but have not received a dime since their employment.
According to him that they are on a peaceful protest to the office of the head of Service and to tell the world they are suffering.
“We are peaceful citizens that is why we are demonstrating peacefully. We want the world to know our suffering.
“Five years is not five days. Even the HoS is somewhere here, he cannot even come out to address us and I know he has nothing to tell us,” he accused.
The workers demanded the sack of the Special Adviser to Governor Ben Ayade on Payroll Matters, Mr. John Odey Iyaya for not fighting for the good of workers.
Reacting to the workers protest, the Head Of Service, Mr. Ogbang Akwaji said the protesters are not workers as they claimed.
“There is nothing new about those calibre of persons. They are flaunting appointment letters but his Excellency the governor clearly stated that he did not give authorization.
“So if you have appointment letter into the service and the governor said he did not authorize then what you are holding amounts to nothing.
“The governor addressed them at the stadium and labour listed their matter as one of the items in the memorandum of understanding and they are on it”, Akwaji explained.