DELTA State Governor, Dr Emmanuel Uduaghan has said industrial disharmony can be curbed when the Federal Government involves the states in negotiations of wages and allowances with the organised labour.
Speaking on Monday, April 28, 2014 in Asaba when he received members of Senior Executive Course 36 of the National Institute of Policy and Strategic Studies (NIPSS), Kuru, Governor Uduaghan observed that oftentimes, most states do not have the financial capacity to pay allowances and wages agreed with the organised labour by the Federal Government.
According to him, industrial disharmony witnessed in the states could easily be linked with payment of agreed wages and allowances between the Federal Government and the organised labour, as the agreements are assumed to be binding on the states even when they lack the capacity to pay.
This industrial disharmony, he argued could be avoided if federalism was practiced to the letter and the states allowed to be part of the negotiations with labour and pay agreed wages and allowances in line with their capacity
“The Federal Government goes into negotiations with labour leaders in Abuja without involving the states and reach agreements which are expected to be binding on all. Most states do not have the financial capacity to implement these decisions and this has led to frequent strike actions and disharmony in the affected states”, he stated.
The Governor lauded the theme of the study which is ‘Industrial Relations, Labour Productivity and National Development’ and expressed hope that the course participants will proffer lasting solution to industrial disharmony in the country.
He used the occasion to state that the ‘Delta Beyond Oil’ initiative of his administration was to position the state to be less dependent on revenue from oil and gas, observing that despite the state being rich in oil and gas, his administration was diversifying the state economy for it to be more buoyant.
Uduaghan urged industrialists to take advantage of the friendly investment environment in Delta State disclosing that they will have quick returns on their investments.
He also advocated for short-term courses for political office holders and politicians, observing, “The way NIPSS courses are structured has made it difficult for politicians to benefit from it.”
“NIPSS should organise shorter courses that will be for one or two weeks because it will be difficult for political leaders to leave office to attend the one year course,” Governor Uduaghan said.
Leader of the study team which comprises sixteen Nigerians from different sectors of the economy, Ambassador Adamu Abbas informed the Governor and top government functionaries who witnessed the courtesy visit that they were on a study tour of the state.
He disclosed that the study was to proffer solutions to recurring strike actions by the organised labour that is affecting growth and productivity in the country.
“The Federal Government is worried with the frequency of strike in the country because when there is industrial harmony and good industrial relations, there will be improved productivity,” Ambassador Abbas stated.