On Monday, the Abia State House of Assembly complex was engulfed in protest and disruption as members of the Parliamentary Staff Association of Nigeria (PASAN) initiated an indefinite strike. The strike action was driven by the non-implementation of financial autonomy for the parliamentary workers, an issue that has remained unresolved and contentious.
The members of PASAN blocked the entrance gate to the State Assembly complex, preventing anyone from accessing the premises. They held placards with various inscriptions, all demanding the immediate implementation of financial autonomy. At the heart of their protest was their disappointment with the Abia State Government’s failure to domesticate Executive Order 10, signed by President Muhammadu Buhari in 2020.
A Longstanding Issue
The Chairman of Abia PASAN, Mr. Sunday Kalu, addressed the media during the protest. He explained that this strike was not an impulsive decision but a response to the directive from the national body of PASAN and the government’s repeated inaction. Kalu highlighted that a strike had been undertaken in the past, only to be suspended after negotiations with the government. Unfortunately, despite the promises made during those negotiations, no significant progress had been made.
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Kalu emphasized that the union had embarked on this indefinite strike to achieve concrete results for its members. While some states had started partial implementation of financial autonomy, Abia had not fully followed due process, particularly in establishing the administrative autonomy granted by the Abia State House of Assembly Commission Law. The union’s demands were clear: the constitution of the Assembly commission and full financial autonomy.
A Plea to the State Government
The striking parliamentary workers are calling on the Abia State Government to take action promptly. They argue that meeting their demands is essential for ending the strike and restoring normalcy to the State Assembly. The protesters are resolute in their stance, and they will not back down until their concerns are adequately addressed.
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