By: Bomba Dauda
The coalition of kaduna state labour movement, which comprises of NLC, TUC, JUTIKS, RATAWU, NUT and other affiliate unions disagree with the kaduna state government planned deduction of 25% of their April and May salaries. This statement was contained in a resolution reached across the unions and made known to the government during a meeting between the coalition and the Head of Service, HOS, of kaduna state at the boardroom of the office, yesterday.
According to the report, “The meeting which was at the instance of the Head of Service of the State was held yesterday 14th April.
“You will recall that the Deputy Governor of Kaduna State who is also heading the State Emergency Response in the fight against the spread of Covid-19 recent broadcast indicated that governments desire to impose a levy on all employees under the State Civil/Public Service. It was against this backdrop that the HOS deemed it necessary to invite the labour Unions for a meeting with the view of intimating on the matter.”
At the end of the meeting and contrary to government 25% levy to be deducted in their April and May salaries, the “Unions resolved to contribute 5% of the April, 2020 salaries across board. And the HOS was visibly not impressed about their resolved and she instantly requested for an upward review, the rancour that ensured compelled the HOS to come out in clear terms and stated that, “A decision has already been taken by the state government to impose a 25% levy to be deducted in the April, 2020 salary of all employees under the payroll of the state government.”
The report further highlighted, “The HOS quickly added that she had to passionately appealed to the government to spread the deduction across two months (April-May, 2020).”
In their response, the coalition took a position informing government that: “Government should bear the burden of imposing on employees of the state.
“Unions resolved to voluntarily contribute 5% of their April 2020 salary to the Covid-19 donation account. Any deduction beyond 5% is not with the consent and approval of the unions in the state
“The government is therefore expected to convey this decision to all employees via a circular.”
According to a former union member, who was affected by the state government civil service downsizing policy, who didn’t want his name mentioned: “The state government has been deducting some money from our salaries since December, 2019, for it’s phantom Health Insurance Scheme. There is wisdom if the government will just convert it to fight covid-19 and leave salaries alone.
“Government started deduction from our salaries for the Health Insurance Scheme without our consent, without telling us it’s modus operandi and we have not benefitted at all from it. So, where is the money?”