Angry Ondo workers seal off GTBank over unpaid salaries

Posted by News Express | 29 January 2014 | 3,245 times

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Government workers in Ondo State yesterday blocked the entrance of the two branches of Guarantee Trust Bank (GTB) in Alagbaka area of Akure, to protest the nonpayment of their salaries.

The workers stormed the bank in the early hours of the morning with four trucks belonging to the state waste management board to block the entrance.

Our correspondent reports that the workers prevented customers and staff from gaining access into the premises.

The protesters promised to report at the bank premises on a daily basis until the bank pays them their January salary.

Speaking with newsmen, chairman of the Joint Negotiation Committee of workers and government, Oluwole Adeleye, said the state government transferred N706 million into the staff matters account of the bank, but that the bank refused to release the money.

He said the argument of the bank was that some workers in the state were still owing the loan granted to them by the bank since 2008.

He said the leadership of the JNC attempted to resolve the issue by approaching the bank to know the number of defaulting workers, just as arrangement was on to surcharge the debtors and remit the money to the bank.

“But the bank went ahead to deduct the money from the staff matter account. The leadership of the union got to know when they requested to transfer the money to another bank since the state government directed that all workers salary must be paid centrally,” he said.

He added that the state Accountant General also wrote the bank on the matter, expressing dismay that it failed to inform the leadership of JNC and the state government before deducting the money.

He pleaded with the bank to reverse its decision and dialogue with the state government.

“We are not denying the fact that some workers are still owing the bank from the loan they granted in 2008, but they should not hold on to our January salary,” he said.

All efforts to get the reaction of the bank on the matter proved abortive.

•Text courtesy of Daily Trust. Photo shows GTBank CEO, Segun Agbaje.


Source: News Express

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