By: EDEM DARLINGTON, Calabar
Former staff of old Metro Hotel Calabar have called on Governor Emmanuel Udom of Akwa Ibom State to pay their entitlements, more than 20 years after they were sent back to their state of origin.
One of the affected staff lamented to this reporter how, numerous letters and pleas to Akwa Ibom State government fell on deaf ears.<tyle=”color: #000000; font-family: sans-serif; font-size: 20.992px; line-height: normal;”>He said after the creation of Akwa Ibom from the old Cross River State, staff of the organization were asked to return to their various states of origin. While those of Cross River who were working in Akwa Ibom on their return to their state were reabsorbed into their state civil service and those who were not willing, were paid their entitlements. Their counterparts in Akwa Ibom have been left to suffer for many years now, with some of them almost begging to eat.
One of the leaders of the affected staff said in 2012, former governor had ordered their screening and payment, having discovered their case to be genuine, but six years after the screening, nothing has been done, leaving them to continue to suffer.
He lamented that the delay in payment of their entitlement is has a result of interference by some persons parading as leaders of a fake union who have insisted that they must take a certain percentage from whatever will be paid them.
‘ because we have refused to allow that nonsense, that is why they have connived with some persons in government to deny us our due’
He called on governor Udom to come to their aid by ensuring that their money is paid without further delay to alleviate their sufferings.
‘we have even met the deputy governor and the head of service who both assured us that something is being done but till now nothing has been done. We want to use this medium to call on the governor to look into our plight and order the immediate payment of our entitlement’
He said although Governor Emmanuel Udom had announced during the may day celebration in Uyo township stadium that he will ensure immediate payment of all pensions and gratuities to affected civil servants in the state. He was worried that some persons will still want to stiffen the process for their own selfish reason.
He called on the government to look into their case to ensure that they are back on their feet again.