Inside Ibadan

Ibadan indigenes intervene in Oyo strike

The ongoing strike in Oyo State may soon be called off with the intervention of the Central Council of Ibadan Indigenes which met leaders of the Nigeria Labour Congress and the Nigeria Union of Teachers recently.

The labour unions declared the strike after the state announced a proposal for the involvement of private partnership in the running of 31 out of 631 private secondary schools in the state.

The NLC also demanded the payment of six-month salary arrears to its workers by the state government as a condition for the strike to be called off.

On Tuesday, the state chairman of the NLC, Waheed Olojede, and other executive members of the NLC met with the leadership of the CCII on labour dispute.

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President-General of the CCII, Wole Akinwande, appealed to leaders of both unions to embrace dialogue with the state government with a view to putting an end to the strike.

He also urged the unions to review their positions for the conflict to be resolved.

The CCII leadership assured the union leaders that their positions would be well presented to Governor Abiola Ajimobi within a few days.

Informed source said the labour leaders asked the CCII leadership to prevail upon the governor to pay at least four-month salaries out of the six owed the workers.

A source, who spoke to our correspondent on Wednesday on condition of anonymity, added, “The labour leaders said one of the conditions that could end the strike is if the two suits instituted against leaders of the unions are withdrawn by the state government.

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“CCII leaders agreed to meet the governor on Friday to present the positions of labour and appeal to him to consider a neutral option to settle the rift.”

Meanwhile, Ajimobi on Wednesday appealed to the striking workers to return to work.

The governor made the appeal in an interview with journalists shortly after observing prayers at the Eid Ground, Agodi in Ibadan.

He called on labour leaders in the state to meet government representatives to resolve the issue.

Ajimobi stated, “I am using this opportunity to call on labour and all stakeholders in the state, including teachers, workers, students, traders, even the thugs and brigands, to come together and join hands with me to improve Oyo State.

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“Let us live peacefully with ourselves. We don’t want anything else, but peace. Where there is peace, there will be progress. Let them (labour leaders) come so that we can sit together to discuss how to allocate the little money that we have now.”

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