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Unpaid Wages, Allowances: DICON Staff Seek Open Communication - Politics - Nairaland

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Unpaid Wages, Allowances: DICON Staff Seek Open Communication by newscraft2023: 9:19am On May 21
Unpaid Wages, Allowances: DICON Staff Seek Open Communication

In a move to address worker grievances, civilian staff at the Defence Industries Corporation of Nigeria (DICON) are demanding better communication with management and a resolution to outstanding wage concerns. The call comes after demonstrations held from April 23rd to May 3rd at the corporation's factory in Kaduna.

The staff are dissatisfied about being excluded from the Integrated Payroll and Personnel Information System (IPPIS), which raises concerns about transparency and the accuracy of their pay. They are also frustrated about the abrupt discontinuation of allowances for scarce skills and transportation, as well as outstanding payments related to minimum wage increases and a government award. "The lack of these payments has caused significant financial hardship for many of us and impacting their morale. We're struggling to make ends meet and feel increasingly frustrated," a DICON staff member stated.

They said while established communication channels exist, their attempts to raise concerns through town hall meetings have been met with silence. "We acknowledge established communication channels and attempted to raise these concerns through various means, including the Director General's Town Hall Meetings. However, the lack of response left us with limited options," the statement said.

The statement acknowledged a recent clarification from the Director General of DICON, Major General Aniedi Edet that wage control lies with a different entity as offering some hope for a quicker resolution of outstanding payments. They said they are encouraged by this development. "We were encouraged to hear the Director General's recent statement clarifying that DICON staff wage control resides with the President and Accountant General. We hope this expedites the resolution of outstanding payments," the statement added.

Meanwhile, the DICON staff expressed concern over the alleged formation of an investigative committee following the demonstrations. While acknowledging due process, they argued that “only a disproportionately small number (18) of participants were issued with queries signed by Air Commodore Ola Emmanuel, Director of Production.” According to them, “this raises concerns, given the overwhelmingly peaceful participation of over 80% of staff.” The staff therefore demanded a “fair and transparent process that avoids selective justice.”

Reacting to the staff's concerns, Major General Aniedi Edet, DICON's Director General, offered a contrasting perspective. He accused the staff of being "economical with the truth" and described their demonstrations as "mischievous and baseless." Major General Edet further claimed that such actions violated employee regulations and could result in prison terms, citing provisions in the Act of Employees' Conditions of Service that forbid protest, trade unionism, and strikes by corporation staff.

The DICON staff in the statement, however, emphasized that their demonstrations were "a legitimate expression of worker concerns, protected under their rights." They said they "remain dedicated to DICON and are open to exploring solutions that address their needs while benefiting both the workforce and the company." Open communication, they stated, "is key to achieving this."

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