Skip to main content

Benue crisis may worsen as NEMA threatens strike


The humanitarian crisis in Benue State and other distressed communities may worsen as officials of the National Emergency Management Agency have threatened to embark on strike over the non-payment of their allowances, among other issues.

The threat was contained in a letter written by the Secretary-General of the Association of Senior Civil Servants of Nigeria, Isaac Ojenmhenike; which was addressed to the President, the Senate President, the Speaker of the House of Representatives and other senior government officials.

In the letter dated August 10, 2017, the association asked the Federal Government to meet their demands on or before August 31, or they would embark on strike.

It stated, “The Association of Senior Civil Servants of Nigeria is constrained to inform you that its leadership had met with the management of NEMA on several occasions to discuss labour issues affecting its members to no avail.

“The most grievous of these labour issues include the refusal of the NEMA management to pay legitimate overtime claims of deserving staff; the refusal of the management to renew the personnel life assurance policy of staff and the monthly unauthorised payments to certain categories of staff using nepotism by the management of NEMA without due process.”

The association also accused the management of the agency of failing to train its personnel as well as refusing to pay the Duty Tour Allowance and other claims to deserving officers.

The letter added, “If the management of NEMA fails to address these unfair labour practices at the expiration of this 21-day ultimatum, the leadership of the association should not be held liable for whatever industrial action it chooses to embark upon.”

Some employees of the agency told one of our correspondents that the strike was inevitable, unless the Federal Government cautioned the agency’s Director-General, Mustapha Maihaja.

An employee, who spoke on condition of anonymity, said, “Since the new DG resumed, he has been silent on approvals for different projects at the IDPs’ camps. There is now over N2bn in NEMA’s account, but the DG has refused to release money for anything.

“If not that the President directed him to intervene in the Benue incident, he would have done nothing about it. In fact, the Benue incident is the first flood disaster that NEMA is trying to tackle since the agency got its new DG.”

Efforts to get the reaction of the NEMA boss were not successful as he did not answer calls made to his telephone and did not also reply to a text message sent to him on the matter.

But the agency’s Head, Media and Public Relations, Mr. Sani Datti, told one of our correspondents that he would not speak on the matter until Tuesday after the holiday.

“For now, I can’t say anything because I’m in Kano. You know we are still observing the public holiday; I think until when we resume on Tuesday, then we can see what will happen. So I can’t say anything for now, until Tuesday,” he said.

Meanwhile, the Peoples Democratic Party on Sunday condoled with the government and people of Benue State over the flood that wreaked havoc on farmlands and displaced thousands of inhabitants in 24 communities including Makurdi, the state capital.

The party, in a statement released from the office of its national publicity secretary, also condemned the alleged slow response by NEMA.

The statement said, “We condemn the slow response of the National Emergency Management Agency to the disaster.

“We wonder why NEMA, an agency created by the Federal Government with the mandate to respond speedily in times of emergency, will wait for the so called “Presidential directives’ before performing its duties.

“In view of the above, we consider NEMA’s action unfortunate and unprofessional. We therefore advise all agencies of government whose duty it is to provide emergency services to do so promptly in order to save lives.


Comments

Popular posts from this blog

Is Davido A Member Of The Black Axe Secret Cult? Check Out What His Manager Is Saying

Asa Asika, Davido’s country manager,  has rubbished a controversial report which went viral last week that one Tobi Adegoke, a 25-year-old suspected member of the Black Axe cult was lured into becoming a member of the group with promises that joining the group would grant him the rare opportunity of meeting Davido, Vanguard reports. According to the suspect, a budding musician who is currently in police custody after being arrested and paraded alongside 26-other suspected cultists by the Lagos State Police Command last week Wednesday; he fell for the cheap trick because he believed meeting Davido would boost his music career.  “I am an Aiye member (Black Axe). I have been in the cult for about two years. I was told that Davido was a member and if I joined, I will be able to meet him. It was the guy who initiated me that said so. He said he worked for Davido and that it will be easy access for me. But since I joined, I have not met Davido. They told me I’ll become a very popular musici…

Marriage: A school of learning, discovery

By Pastor Okokon Ating I have been enlightened that marriage is an insti-tution established by God which no student has gra-duated from. Once an in-dividual is able to obtain admission into this sch-ool, one keeps on learning till death. In the school of marriage every student is a novice. No matter how highly educated one is, he/she has a blank knowledge compared with the normal academic attainment.                                                   wedding ring
There are many mysteries embedded in marriage unknown to the unlearned heart. Couples do not know marriage but learn and study it. That is, cou-ples learn and study it when they come into the practical aspect of it. I came in contact with a young lady who was busy attending marriage semin-ars and reading several books on marriage. Atten-ding seminars and reading books on marriage are good, I told her; but where you can know and be pr-oud of living confidently in marriage is when you enter into the reality of marriage. This is w…

Save The Planet, Preserve The Ozone Layer

Everything you need to live well
The activities done by man to make life easier has depleted the ozone layer and endangered Planet earth due to pollution. Planet Earth has indicated through global warming the most visible sign of climate change. According to the United Nations Environment Programme (UNEP), over the last century, sea levels have risen by between 10 and 25 centimeters, and carbon dioxide—the main cause of the greenhouse effect—is responsible for 85% of the increase in the Earth’s temperature over the last 10 years. To stop this negative effect and preserve the ozone layer, here are a few ways to check air pollution; Prevent bush burning In some rural areas bush burning is an easy way to prepare farmlands for cultivation. This is not only harmful to the soil but also the planet as well. Take precautions to avoid starting fires especially during the dry season. Buy organic products. Go for eco-friendly products that have no effec…