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150 casual workers protest in Ijebu-Ode

26 August 2013, 16:23

Ogun - Some 150 casual workers of a private food and beverages company in Irewon, Ijebu North-East Local Government Area of Ogun on Saturday embarked on a street protest against alleged exploitation by their employer.

The workers alleged that contrary to the management's decision to pay them N1 000 per day, some "middlemen" in the company paid them N400.

The protesters carried placards with inscriptions, such as "Pay us our entitlements"  and "No to 7.30 a.m.-7.30 p.m. new order."

Victor Adesegun and Mariam Ibrahim, leaders of the protesting workers told the News Agency of Nigeria  (NAN) that they decided to protest so that the management would  be aware of what was going on.

"We work as casual workers at the company between the hours of eight in the morning and six in the evening.

"Suddenly, management increased our working hours from 8 a.m. to 6 p.m. to 7.30 a.m. to 7. 30 p.m. with an additional N80 stipend.

"We do not agree with the extension with the little change added on top because it is like stretching us beyond our limits,’’ Adesegun said.

Ibrahim  asked:  ''What is the value of the money  when we have to work extra hard to be able to even get the money?''

She said that part of the reason they protested the extension was the restriction on vehicular movement in Ijebu-Ode.

According to her, commercial motorcycles and tricycles are expected to stop operations by 7 p.m. as directed by the local government authorities.

"How do we get to our houses from Irewon, a suburb of Ijebu-Ode, when we cannot find means of transporting ourselves home?’' she asked.

Ibrahim said that many of them were not residents of Ijebu-Ode.

Reacting to the protest, a top official of the company, who simply identified herself as Tina, said that the management was meeting was meeting over the matter to address the issues and find an amicable resolution.



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