Protesting workers bar Senator Shehu Sani from entering National Assembly
Hundreds of National Assembly workers under the auspices of Parliamentary Staff Association of Nigeria (PASAN) on Tuesday grounded activities at the Assembly over owed salaries and allowances.
The protesting working who blocked the main entrance of the Assembly ordered approaching lawmakers to go back home.
Deputy Senate President, Senator Ike Ekweremadu, Senator Shehu Sani, Mohamed Kaita, Hon. Rita Orji and Hon. Abdulrazak Namdas were among those ordered back home.
Others include Senator Aliyu Sabi, Senator Olusola Adeyeye and Hon. Babba Danagundi Munir.
Within the Assembly, another set of same protesters crowded the lobby carrying placards and chanting, “Go home, no sitting. Go home, no sitting”. Some inscription on their placards reads: Constitute the National Assembly commission now; Omolori is a contractor, killing staff with poor condition of service. Others were seen making gest of a dummy mace.
Reacting to the development, clerk of the Assembly, Mr. Sani Omolori, calls for calm and patience, saying the leadership of the Assembly remains committed to the agreement reached with the PASAN.
“They need to be a bit patient. The proceeding officer (Bukola Saraki and Yakubu Dogara) acceded without hesitation to their request for these percentages. They agreed and captured it in the budget.”
Mr. Omolori explained that release of funds by the executive is what affecting implementation of the reached agreement.
“We approved an increased payment, which was captured in the 2018 budget. But as it is today, it is common knowledge level of implementation of 2018 budget especially the new addition by the National Assembly, which has now being implemented. That is where we hoped that the money would be paid; to the extent that the money is not released there is no way we can effect payment”, he said.
He, however, expressed worried as effort by leadership of the assembly to avert the protest failed.
Recall in September, a similar protest organized by members of National Assembly Legislative Aides Forum (NASLAF) was confined to the lobby of the Assembly and didn’t ground activities.
However, Oak TV can report that this is the first time Nigerian protesting parliamentary workers would shut the parliament.
Aside allegation of unpaid salaries and allowances, NASLAF is also accusing the leadership of the 8th National Assembly of violating training and Duty Transport Allowance (DTA) agreement.
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