Workers Lament Frustration, Hardship Over Re-validation .Protest Extortion By Business Centers


By Okey Alozie

Unpaid workers in Imo State Civil Service are now being subjected to hardship, frustration and extortion by officials handling the fresh revalidation exercise which started on Monday 14th Nov 2021 at the State Secretariat Complex located along Port Harcourt road Owerri.

Information revealed that the unpaid workers passed through hail before getting their attestation Forms. Moreover, they were allegedly forced to pay up to N500 before completing their transaction.

The Business Centers that typed the attestation letters for the unpaid workers demanded N300 while the officials at the Parent Ministries took more than N200 before putting their signatures as we gathered.

Further investigative report revealed that the chairman handling the revalidation and verification of the Local Government Workers allegedly commit a lot of blunders.

Some of the unpaid workers who stormed Local Government Service Commission for the audit exercise accused the officials of using their position to intimidate, harass and humiliate those that came for the verification exercise; one of the unpaid workers who spoke to our reporter under strict anonymity revealed she was embarrassed by the Chairman on Wednesday during exercise.

The Local Government Service Commission as we were told has not done much. The unpaid workers are complaining of negligence and abandonment on the side of the revalidation officers at the LGA service commission “not up to three Local Government Areas have been attended to as we gathered.

Atleast two unpaid workers have slumped since Monday due to hardship and frustration they faced at the State Secretariat.

Just yesterday, five percent of the unpaid workers of Imo State got one month salary alert out of the 18 months salaries that government is owing them. Many who got the one month salary alert refused to celebrate.

Imo pensioners are also facing the same problem. The retired ones are said to dying on daily due to hardship yet the State Government has got refused to pay them.

A close source from Government House Owerri revealed that the staff strength must surely be reduced next year adding the ongoing verification exercise will expose those that will go.

The picture according experts is getting clearer that Imo Government is definitely going to downsize the labour force to the size that it can afford to pay. It is most likely the government will embark on downsizing the labour force as from January 2022.