Taraba State government on Friday, March 23, 2018, said the shortfall in revenue allocation and the need to pay salaries as at when due were reasons the state government was owing retirees N11 billion gratuity.
Simon Angyo, the state’s head of civil service, disclosed this at the state accountability programme ‘Face the Press’, organized by the Senior Special Assistant to Darius Ishaku on Public Affairs.
He explained that though the government was promptly paying pension, salaries and other entitlements of workers and retirees, the backlog of gratuity would be cleared as soon as the state’s economy improved.
Angyo expressed delight over the understanding reached between workers of the state-owned University, Polytechnic, School of Nursing, and College of Education, who had earlier embarked on a strike over unresolved issues with the unions.
He said that government had engaged the respective labour unions into negotiations that yielded fruits, leading to the suspension of the strikes.
“Let me inform you that as we speak, no union is on strike in the state. All the civil servants in the state who were on strike have called off the strikes.
“We have engaged the umbrella union body for our Polytechnic, College of Education, School of Nursing and the Academic Staff Union of University and have reached a point where all the groups have agreed to call off the strikes.
“This goes to show the commitment of the state government towards the well being of its workers.
“We hope to keep our side of the bargain to ensure that we don’t have to get to the point of going on strikes before things are resolved,’’ he said.
Angyo disclosed that alterations of records by civil servants, who do not want to leave the service after they are due for retirement, had remained a major problem for the service.
He said that the state government was already working to ensure that all data related to the over 14, 000 civil servants in the state was computerized and safely secured to address the challenge of alteration of records.