Workers in Akwa Ibom State are thrilled by the announcement that Governor Udom Emmanuel has approved the release of the 2019 promotion of 2,248 workers in the state.
The State Head of Civil Service, Elder Effiong Essien, broke the news during the official opening ceremony of a 5-Day Capacity Building Retreat for Officers on grade levels 13 to 17 in Uyo on Tuesday.
According to him, “in his avowed commitment to the development of workers and growth of the Civil Service, Governor Udom Emmanuel has approved the release of the 2019 promotion to 2, 248 workers in the state government employ”.
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Those affected by the promotion are officers from grade level seven and above who participated in the 2019 promotion exercise.
Essien described the promotion as very timely and beneficial, saying that additional earnings would augment the increasing family expenditure of the affected workers and charged the workers not to relent in their dedication and support to the present government to reciprocate the Governor’s sincere concern for them.
Meanwhile, the announcement has received widespread applause within and outside the Civil Service in the state.
Reacting to the announcement, the Honorary Special Assistant on Labour Matters, Comrade Unyime Usoro, stated that this is another indication that Governor Udom Emmanuel is sensitive to the welfare of Akwa Ibom workers and keen on improving their condition of service.
He said the promotion was very timely because “naturally, every action taken towards improvement of welfare of workers will impact positively on workers’ morale and productivity”.
Usoro, who is a former State Chairman of Nigeria Labour Congress, NLC, added that workers are very mindful of promotion since their monetary benefits are tied to their grade level per time as such if their promotion is either denied or delayed it would demoralise them.
“There are a number of things [benefits] that are dependent on the grade level which you are. For instance, your leave grant depends your salary grade level, if you want to go on tour and even your retirement benefits, so the moment workers’ promotion is delayed or denied it will demoralise them which in turns adversely affects their morale and output.
“So, it is a very good development and His Excellency, Governor Udom Emmanuel, has taken this step to boost the morale of workers in the service. Now, even those yet to receive their promotion will be hopeful that their turn will come”.
Also baring him mind on this development, the State Secretary of NLC, Comrade Iboro Ibara, stated the announcement is a welcomed development.
According to him, he heard the cheery news on approval of promotion yesterday. While acknowledging the effort of government he said that workers are hopeful that all abnormalities pertaining to their promotion in the past years will be normalised.
He further hinted that promotion is a boost to productivity, but without it “I think it is against the growth of the service and not quite positive for productivity. People are supposed to be promoted as at when due and people are supposed to derive the benefits of their promotion as at when due”.
The State Chairman of Trade Union Congress, TUC, Comrade Akamba Awah, was not available to comment on this development. Calls to his mobile phones went unanswerded as at the time of filing this report.