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JUSUN shuts down Plateau courts

The Plateau State chapter of the Judiciary Staff Union of Nigeria (JUSUN) on Monday declared an indefinite strike as a result of the government’s inability to resolve lingering issues ranging from outfit, security, domestic allowances among other issues.

The strike, which the union said is total, will paralyse judicial activities cutting across the 17 Local Government Councils in the State.

Governor Simon Lalong had on June 12, 2021, said the dust over the implementation of autonomy for the judicial and legislative arms of government across the country has been settled in Plateau State, with the three arms of government reaching an agreement after a series of negotiations on modalities for its operations.

Lalong disclosed this at a dinner and lecture to mark the 2021 Democracy Day held at the Banquet Hall of the New Government House, Little Rayfield, Jos.

The Governor had said prior to the clamour for implementation of autonomy across the nation, his administration had put in place structures for autonomy and even implemented some aspects.

“This includes establishing the Judicial Service Commission and the House of Assembly Service Commission which are the administrative fulcrums of the two arms of Government among others,” he said.

He said with the agreement reached on modalities for implementation, “I have directed that all funds accruing to the two arms of Government should immediately be transferred to them.

“This will continue to be the practice henceforth”, he maintained.

“Based on the arrangement, after every FAAC monthly allocations are received and Internally Generated Revenues ascertained, statutory charges and liabilities will be deducted before each arm of government is given what belongs to them”, he explained.

JUSUN, while declaring the strike action, through its State Chairman, Comrade Philip Longji, told members, “It has become necessary to address you today because of our lingering peculiar allowances since 2014, which has been approved.

“The peculiar allowances include outfit, security, domestic among other issues, which has been enjoyed by our counterparts from other States of the federation, but sadly we yet to benefit in this State, and management have remained adamant.”

Langji maintained that “And therefore, my fellow comrades, we have no other alternative than to embark on an indefinite strike.

“Going by the provisions of the law, once autonomy is granted, everything will be done within the judiciary

“However, the personnel cost has not met what it suppose to, as well as the capital and the recurring, as I speak, with a heavy heart, we don’t know where our salaries are being prepared”, he lamented.

“Therefore, for us as a Union, this autonomy is a fallacy in Plateau State.”

He further stated that the Union has approached management, and has been “patient and magnanimous”.

Longji further explained that “A committee was set up to look into the issues of JUSUN in Plateau State; sadly the committee ended unceremoniously, in fact, base on the information made available to us.

“We have exhausted all avenues, but unfortunately, this is where we are today.

“Therefore, as from today, all courts with exception of federal courts will remain close, until our demands are met.”

On members who may try to sabotage the union during the indefinite strike, Longji warned, “I want to warn all of us because I know there are always saboteurs; that anybody that is caught violating this strike action, will be penalise.”

He commended members of JUSUN for remaining steadfast in the pursuit of their rights, and urge them to continue.

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