Ekiti HoS advocates removal of labour issues from exclusive list
By; Oladele Adedayo, Ado-Ekiti.
Ekiti State Head of Service, Dr. Olugbenga Faseluka has advocated the removal of labour matters from exclusive to concurrent legislative list.
The Head of Service made the call in Ado-Ekiti on Tuesday at the 2nd biannual symposium of the Association of Resident Doctors in Ekiti State.
Delivering a paper titled “Achieving Industrial Harmony in the Public Service: Finding a Common Pathway”,Dr. Faseluka said the present arrangement whereby “the Federal Government unilaterally decides on industrial matters which will result in outcomes that have implications for sub-national governments deserves a closer scrutiny”.
The Head of Service who noted that the arrangement has serious financial implications for many sub-national governments stated that the removal of labour matters from exclusive legislative list would help avert industrial face-off between labour and government on issues relating to labour.
Dr. Faseluka who disclosed that Ekiti State had evolved a strong internal dispute resolution mechanism within the public service,
asserted that the state had enjoyed “relatively peaceful industrial
relations since return to civil rule in 1999”.
He stated that aside strike actions induced by the failure of
compromise at the national level, workers in the state have not
embarked on a local strike occasioned by failure of internal dispute resolution mechanism.
The Head of Service adduced industrial conflicts to dereliction of
duties especially wages and entitlements on the part of the employer.
“Employers feel that wages and conditions to be provided to workers are too costly or inappropriate for the skills and the tasks at hand. An example is the inability or refusal of some state Governments to pay workers salaries for upwards of six months. Another is the simmering discordance between the Governor’s of some states and Labour on the reasoned ability of the N18,000 current minimum wage. Happily, Governor Ayodele Fayose of Ekiti State has continually stated that nothing will make his government detract from the minimum wage baseline nor reduce the size of the workforce”, Faseluka asserted.
In his remarks, the chairman of the symposium and Registrar of Family Medicine at the State Teaching Hospital, Dr. Ayodeji Owoyemi said the lecture was organised against the backdrop of agitation about Doctors welfare and working standards which have resulted to industrial disharmony.
Owoyemi added that the symposium was expected to help find alternative and effective ways of achieving and surmounting their agitation.