*Ngige: Meeting postponed to harmonise issues
Regina Otokpa, Abuja
The ongoing strike by the Judiciary Staff Union of Nigeria (JUSUN) and Parliamentary Staff Association of Nigeria (PASAN) still lingers, as both unions on Tuesday staged a walk out from a meeting with the Federal Government.
The conciliatory meeting, which was summoned at the instance of the Minister of Labour and Employment, Dr Chris Ngige, was scheduled to commence by 3pm, but the aggrieved unions, who were seated at promptly at the scheduled time, staged a walk out after waiting for almost two hours without being attended to.
All efforts by the Permanent Secretary, Ministry of Labour and Employment, Dr. Peter Yarfa and Special Adviser to President Muhammadu Buhari on Niger Delta Affairs, Ita Enang, to prevail on the unions to return for the meeting meet a brick wall as the they stormed out of the ministry, entered their cars and left.
Other personalities at the meeting were the representative of the NBA, Inspector General of Police, NJIC, and the head legal team of the Nigerian Governors’ Forum.
National President of PASAN, Comrade Mohammed Usman, who spoke to newsmen during the walk out, beated the minister for what he described as “unfair treatment” meted on workers, said they will not accept such disrespect for a meeting which should be taken seriously considering the importance of the issues at stake.
On her part, Ntional Public Relations Officer of JUSUN, Comrade Koin Selepreye, condemned the attitude of Ngige for not only disrespecting the time scheduled for the meeting, but for also keeping the unions waiting for that long, when the invitation sent by the ministry had stated 3pm as meeting time.
However, the Minister of labour and Employment, Sen.Chris Ngige has said the combined meeting with both unions was postponed to enable the Federal Government negotiating team harmonize all issues from the Memorandum of Understanding reached at separate meetings with the tiers and arms of government.