By Stanley Onyekwere
There are indications of looming industrial war over the non-implementation of the FCT Civil Service Commission Act, as workers under the aegis of Joint Unions Action Committee ( JUAC) in the Federal Capital Territory Administration (FCTA) and Federal Capital Development Authority (FCDA) have declared readiness for an indefinite strike.
The aggrieved workers said the grandstanding of FCT Minister, Malam Muhammad Bello over the Act signed three years ago by President Muhammadu Buhari, has put their fate hanging in the air for too long, and it can’t be allowed.
Chairman of JUAC, Matilukoro Korede, said the FCT Civil Service Commission Act can’t remain in the shelfs, while the administration continues to deny workers the benefits accruing from it.
Korede noted that the just concluded 3- day warning strike last week by the workers was a sign that issues that affect their welfare will not be further subjected to political bottlenecks.
He warned that all the joint Unions in FCTA and FCDA are prepared for an indefinite strike that will cripple all government activities.
He explained workers patience has been exhausted, as the administration has refused to do the needful, after several meetings with the labour leaders.
According to him, workers have been resillient in demanding for the implementation of Executive Order 1 of 2004, which abolished the Ministry of the Federal Capital Territory, long before the signing of Act which has given FCT workers to advance in the Service like their counterparts in the states.
JUAC Chairman further stressed without the implementation of the Act, FCT workers will continually remain under administrative limitations that won’t allow them to grow at par with workers at the states.
He said, “ It was a huge relief when the National Assembly enacted, passed into law and Gazetted (with the consent of the President and Commander in Chief of the Armed Forces of Nigeria) the FCT-Civil Service Commission in 2018.
“This is three years down the line, the big question is why has it been difficult to implement it till date? The FCT-Civil Service Commission was created by an Act of parliament, just like the Federal Civil Service Commission and those of the States Civil Service Commission, with primary responsibility of appointment”.
Among the demands of the workers are; “ the removal of all FCTA staff from the Accountant General of the Federation’s Integrated Personnel and Payroll Information System(IPPIS).
“Others include immediate “ release of all pending cases of conversion, upgrading and Advancement, and abolishment of casualization of workers on FCTA, and especially in Transportation Secretariat, Water Board and the Abuja Environmental Protection Board. Promotion and discipline, also known as (APD), within the FCT,” Korede said.