The Joint Action Committee (JAC) of the five trade unions in the six Oyo State owned tertiary Institutions on Friday alleged the state Commissioner for Information and Culture, Mr Toye Arulogun of Institutions of “deliberate act of distortion of facts and flagrant misinformation of the general public” on the status and ownership of the institutions and the workers therein distorting .
JAC in a statement made available to newsmen in Ibadan signed by its Chairman, Comrade Babatunde Adeniyi, the unions claimed that the Commissioner for Information and Culture on two consecutive live radio interviews granted by Lagelu FM, Ibadan made the said “deliberate act of distortion of facts and flagrant misinformation of the general public” .
The unions lamented further that ” we are strongly worried and perturbed that a Public office holder like Mr Arulogun could not understand that both public servants and civil servants are public sector workers.’
“We are also saddened that Hon. Commissioner for Information and Culture, Mr Toye Arulogun was displaying this kind of attitude at the time the Alaafin of Oyo – The permanent Chairman, Oyo State Council of Obas and Chiefs and other notable sons and daughters of Oyo State are trying to mediate on the issue and facilitate its quick resolution.” it said.
According to the unions, “on the two occasions, Mr Toye Arulogun gave a strongly weak defence of the illegal reduction of salary of workers of these institutions to 25% which has led to unpaid 15-months salary arrears by Oyo State Government, by ignorantly claiming that “workers of these institutions are not Oyo State Government workers because they are public servants and not civil servants and that personnel subvention is the same thing as overhead or running cost”.
The union stressed that “we have maintained the highest standards of diligence, patience and due process in our engagement with government and its agencies as alluded to by Hon. Commissioner for Education, Prof. Adeniyi Olowofela in the live interview granted recently in a radio station in Ibadan.” adding, ” we are now baffled that Mr Toye Arulogun, instead of proffering scientific solutions to the logjam as it is usually done by the Hon. Commissioner for Education as well as Chief of Staff whenever they are engaged in the matter, decided to display disquieted ignorance on a live radio programme by referring to workers of these institutions as private sector workers, particularly, when the Oyo State Government has not privatised the institutions, and His Excellency, Senator (Dr) Isiaka Ajimobi still remains the visitor to all these institutions and the institutions were established by edict(s) or act(s) of Oyo State House of Assembly.”
JAC maintained that “the public should note that the civil servants are the core workers who directly implement government policies in the Ministries, Departments and Agencies of government while the public servants are workers in the government establishments, Parastatals and Specialized institutions established by edict(s) or act(s) of Oyo State House of Assembly, and are rendering specialized services directly to the public on behalf of the government”.
” Both civil servants and public servants are public sector workers contrary to the view-point of Mr Toye Arulogun. The difference between the two is just in the modus operandi of their schedules and duties, salary structure, promotion e.t.c.
“We therefore want to believe that Mr Toye Arulogun is acting alone as regards his claim, and not representing the government and the good people of Oyo State in any way, regarding the issue on ground. And the earlier he begins to act as a good public office holder by looking for amicable resolutions to the problem, the better for all and sundry.”