This article was last updated on May 26, 2022
The strike came after the state Labour, Public Service and Human Resources minister, Ms. Monica Sabino Madut returned from Juba, where she failed to reach agreement with the national ministry of Finance and Economic Planning, regarding payments to the State’s downsized staff, who were affected by the ministry’s 2008 directives.
The minister told Gurtong: “Last month, I was in Juba talking to the national ministry to pay these people who are right now standing in front of my office. Since they were downsized in 2008, they have not been paid and the ministry told me that let the state government pay them and right now our state ministry has started paying them but the problem is that the system is very slow, council of ministers has last week approved a payment of only 7-8 people per a month which take long period to clear 250 people”.
The slow system is due to the huge amount of money that the released employees are owed by the state government; some need payments of 150,000 SSP, producing a total of about eight hundred million pounds, she said.
“We are unable to pay this amount of money at once and this is a problem now as we pay some, the rest claim that they are being discriminated [against],which is not true. I [am] right now want to go outside to talk to them and let them understand that we are paying out all of them but not at once”, she said.
“We have first given out a priority to the old ones to start receiving their pay and right now those who were short listed are now in the process receiving their pay”, continued the Hon. Minister, emphasizing that she is appealing to the hungry staff to calm down and be patient with the system which has now started.
Many of the striking staff today cautioned the ministry to pay them, or face legal procedures.
The public service ministry in WBGS is likely to face a difficult situation with its former staff, including over 500 staff recently relieved from their jobs, mostly school teachers whom the state ministry described as ghost staff.