Federal Workers threaten to Embark on Strike over Alleged Breach of Public Service Rules

Senior civil Servants in the country have threatened to go on strike over alleged breach of public service rules and non-implementation of agreements entered into with the management of National Insurance Commission, NAICOM.

The senior workers under the aegis of Association of Senior Civil Servants of Nigeria, ASCSN, have specifically given a seven-day ultimatum to the NAICOM Commissioner for Insurance to address all their grievances or risk industrial action by their association.

In a letter dated June 26, 2019 by the Secretary-General of ASCSN, Isaac Ojemhenke, the association said,

“We are constrained to inform you that at a meeting of the ASCSN members which was held in Abuja on the 24th June, 2019, it was unanimously agreed that the Management of the National Insurance Commission should be issued a 7 day ultimatum for it to implement all agreements it had reached with the union and also comply with the provisions of other relevant Public Service Rules on the issues in perspective following which an industrial action will be kick-started in the Commission.

“It is necessary to state that ASCSN wishes to be absolved of blames when the strike action commences as a result of the failure of the management to meet the union’s demands within the seven days window opened for it to do the needful.

“It is also necessary to inform you that this letter has been endorsed to the Permanent Secretary, Federal Ministry of Labour and Employment, The Permanent Secretary, Federal Ministry of Finance, The Director General, Department of State Security, The Inspector General of Police, Nigeria Police Force and The Chairman Governing Board, National Insurance Commission for their information and necessary action.”

ASCSN which constitutes Council I of the Joint National Public Service Negotiating Councils, JNPSNC, and also a frontline affiliate member of the Trade Union Congress, TUC, of Nigeria, said it was constrained to intimate the NAICOM management of its preparedness to resume the industrial action in the NAICOM as result of “flagrant breach of the Public Service Rules and the collective agreement reached by parties on the 26th of September, 2017. This agreement was observed in the breach.”

ASCSN stated that the terms of agreement the necessary parties signed at the Federal Ministry of Labour and Employment on the 28th August, 2018, after the union suspended its three days warning strike action included activation of the NAICOM portal, bridging the gap between senior manager and below vis-à-vis the directorate cadre and the cascading of fuel and diesel allowances. Other agreements were the promotion exercise for 2018, conclusion on the on-going investigation of ADHR, condition of service for NAICOM staff and non-victimization clause for workers on account of their participation in the industrial action.

The union however, stated that “We are sad to observe that after about two years, when the initial agreement was signed i.e. the 26th of September, 2017, the Management of the Commission has blatantly refused to implement the terms of the agreement in spite of several appeals made to it by relevant stakeholders, including the Union.

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