Cross River workers protest against early December salary
The payment of December salary by Governor Ben Ayade of Cross River has surprisingly sparked protest among workers.
Civil servants in the state got their salaries for December on the first day of the month.
The governor had promised to carry out the action during a retreat for political appointees at the Obudu Ranch Resort recently.
Ayade had always paid the workers early since he assumed office in May 2015. In May, salaries were paid on the first day to mark Workers’ Day. While this Month, December, he paid on December 1.
The civil servants were however not amused by the gesture as they said the early payment would cause more problems for them in January, 2017.
Some of them insisted it was an attempt to score a political point as they will eventually have to wait for more than 50 days before they receive another salary.
A top civil servant in the Ministry of Environment, who spoke on condition of anonymity, said: “The state government’s decision to pay December salaries of some civil servants within the first three days of the month will make us suffer in due course.
“The government should have employed caution by delaying December salary payments to a later date. Our governor may want to score a political point with this payment, but I think that those of us receiving this money stand to lose fiscally when January comes.”
One of Governor Ayade’s aides who responded to the protest and complaint said they civil servants should be happy instead of faulting the governor’s gesture.
He said: “People are so impossible to please. There are states in this country where salaries are not paid as and when due, but in Cross River State, our governor pays salaries and even pays ahead to cater for special occasions like the Workers’ Day and this Yuletide.
“Instead of applauding him, some people say he shouldn’t have paid. Nigerians are difficult to please.”