IRONY! Oil City Workers Turn Beggars - Flood, 'No Salary' Wreck Havoc
Bayelsa is an oil producing state, but the oil does not translate to money in the accounts of the civil servants.
The cry of civil servants in Bayelsa State is rising and only time will tell when it will get a response from above.
Things have gone from bad to worse for the civil servants who have now lost faith in the labour leaders in the state, as they push for their entitlements in terms of salary and other emoluments.
"Labour leaders have failed us.
"We, the civil servants are the reason government exists at all levels," said an aggrieved civil servant who spoke with Bounce News.
One thing that has remained permanent in their lives is the irregularity in the payment of their salaries, making planning difficult for them.
The story has, however, taken a new dimension, as flood continues to ravage more communities in the oil-rich southern state.
Workers, who shared their predicament with Bounce News listed non-implementation of promotions, unnecessary deduction from their salaries and non-payment of arrears as some of their problems.
Mrs Tari Mondebo, a staff of Post Primary School Board expressed displeasure over the neglect civil servants go through in the state.
"They reduce workers grade levels and deduct money from the stipend we receive as salaries.
"We need salary increment not reduction," she said.
An accountant, Luke Angbari, said "civil servants always cry and beg before their salaries are paid.
"We are always the last set of people to receive anything".
Worst hit by late payment and salary deduction, are teachers.
A staff of Ministry of Education, Flora Ebibo, told Bounce News "Our pay vouchers have been returned twice just to adjust grade levels of staff and reduce salaries of some.
Meanwhile, some civil servants revealed that their salaries have been paid but admitted that there were unnecessary reductions.
A staff of Environmental Sanitation Authority, Fabian Okokobioko, looked like he was in physical pain while he spoke.
"Right now, the salaries has started coming in but the deduction is worrisome," he said.
Mr Okokobioko then pleaded with those responsible to stop and correct the anomaly.
A staff of a commercial bank operating along Yenizue - Gene axis, who would not want to be mentioned, told Bounce News that "the payment are computer operated and automated.
"It is in batches.
"Two banks cannot pay at once.
"When one finishes paying, the other will resume," the source said, without explaining why that was the process.
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The situation has made civil servants rely on borrowing items from traders and that is also becoming a problem for business owners.
Traders and business owners within the state capital complained about low patronage and high level of debt from civil servants, blaming it on late payment of salaries and the increasing rates at which salaries were deducted.
A shop owner, Mrs Ruth Ebrasin, explained her predicament.
"The deduction affected my husband too.
"Some of his colleagues are already buying foodstuffs from me on credit.
"She pleaded with the state government to treat workers well," she explained.
An attempt to find out what the deductions from their salaries were for was unsuccessful. Bounce News tried to reach the Commissioner for Education, Mr Jonathan Obuebite, but he did not take his call.
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