18 March 2014, Lagos — One hundred and thirteen disengaged staff of Ikeja Distribution Company, IKEDC, formerly under Power Holding Company Nigeria, PHCN, Monday, protested non-payment of their entitlements, pleading with President Goodluck Jonathan to come to their aid in ensuring they were paid.
The disengaged staff, who took their protest to the Ikeja headquarter office of the company, said they would not relent in their protest until their entitlements were paid.
But Public Relations Officer of IKEDC, Pekun Adeyanju, said in a quick reaction that the aggrieved protesters were relieved of their duties because of the change in the firm’s security outfit, adding that some of them were not entitled to any severance benefit.
He also said the contract staff were only entitled to a month salary.
Spokesman of the protesters, Bolanle Otunuga, said: “The main reason for our protest is to let the public know that we the regularised security staff of former PHCN, who were disengaged two weeks ago by IKEDC, are yet to paid all our entitlements, including our several pay; two years leave bonus, two years bulk rent.
“Some of us have been in service close to 30 years, but were disengaged as mere commissionaires, it was the same man that signed our regular letter, that is now referring to us as commissionaires.
”Our problem dated back to 2011 when the corporate headquarters in Abuja, headed by Alhaji H.S. Labo, issued a secular signed by Apuye, the executive director on April 8. In that secular, Ikeja management of PHCN was instructed to regularise corporate guards that meet the requirement outlined.
”The Ikeja human resource manager waited two years for reasons best known to him before effecting the instruction on the 8th of April 2013 and backdated it to February 24, 2012.
“After doing this he wrote to the corporate headquarters in Abuja requesting for our staff numbers which are necessary for us to get our entitlements.
”But Alhaji Labo refused issuing our numbers referring to us as newly recruited staff of PHCN, whereas we had been in the system for a very long time.
“Because of the refusal of Labo, we petitioned the National Assembly, which was published last December, but up till now, nothing has been heard, whether it was received or not and no action was taken relating to the petition.
“After the selling off of PHCN, we went to the Bureau of Public Enterprise, BPE, they said they could not help us, that we did not have staff numbers, that we should go and meet Abikoye, who is the source of our problem, that he failed to do the regularisation when other zones were doing theirs and he also did not make us go through the biometrics done for all PHCN staff through- out Nigeria. They said they advised Ikeja management to pay us as commissionaires.
“We are bread winners of our various families, we are suffering and dying, we are appealing to the president to intervene.