By NewsCritic Reporters
Protesting workers of the Abia State Road Maintenance Agency, ABROMA, who took the protest over the non-payment of their 31-months salaries arrears by the Abia State government to the State House of Assembly today, Monday December 16th, 2019 were snubbed as the leadership of the 7th assembly failed to meet with the aggrieved workers.
The protesting workers said they received their last salary on April 2017, a period of 31 months’ deficits, alleging that the General Manager of ABROMA, Engr. Okonji has absconded leaving them stranded with Christmas celebration around the corner.
At the Abia State House of Assembly were they visited to beg the Speaker Engr. Chinedu Orji to intervene on their behalf, the aggrieved workers were not received either by the Speaker or any ranking member of the Assembly, rather they were dismissed by the security and protocol departments, who told them to channel their grievances to their supervising ministry before coming to burden the Speaker with their problems.
They were told that the Speaker was in an executive session, and therefore could not see them, but he still did not send any representative to address the protesting workers unlike what obtains previously.
NewsCritic reports that since the emergence of Rt. Hon Chinedu Orji as Speaker of the 7th assembly, protesters have made the complex their choice destination due to the attention they receive from the speaker.
Oftentimes, the Speaker in his magnanimity would fete the protesters with monetary gifts after assuring them that the state government will look into their plight. One of such instances was when Abia Pensioners protested the non-payment of backlog of pension arrears to the State Assembly and were given one million Naira cash gift by the Speaker which they shared amongst themselves and returned the remnant to their coffers.
Some of the protesting ABROMA workers who spoke to our reporter expressed their disappointment over their inability to meet with the Speaker or any official of the legislative Assembly to address them.
The protesting workers came barely 24 hours after Rt. Hon Orji told the public that he has no interest running for the 2023 Abia governorship following speculations that he is nursing the ambition to succeed Governor Okezie Ikpeazu.
The aggrieved workers of ABROMA vowed to continue with their protest until something is done to address their plight.