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Asaba 2018: Youths Protest Non-Payment Of Wages

Hundreds of menial workers and private security guards trooped to the streets of Asaba, the Delta State capital, on Monday, and barricaded the Government House, protesting against their unpaid wages and maltreatment by the Local Organising Committee (LOC) of the just-concluded 21st African Senior Athletics Championship, held at the uncompleted Stephen Keshi Stadium, Asaba.

The protesters, comprising those engaged by private consultants, namely: Dambiri Global, Top Private Security (TPS), and Force Guard (FG) that got contracts from the LOC, headed by Solomon Ogba, and the chairman of the state’s Sports Commission and younger brother to the state governor, Tony Okowa, threatened to cripple economic activities in the state capital.

“We were made to resume clean-up at 5:30am and close after contingents, Very Important Persons (VIPs) and spectators had left around 8:30pm. We became angry after the N15,000, being the total amount for the five-day event, was slashed to N7,500, and some persons were shortlisted for N6,000.

“We fetched water with buckets for three days after the stanchion collapsed, which was not the initial agreement. To get our money again today became a problem because they felt they have used us and they can dump us.

“We provided security throughout the event. Prior to the championship, we were trained for two weeks without pay, accommodation and feeding. No provision was made for our transportation and feeding during the five days. Now, the event has come and gone, someone somewhere wants to short-change us,” one of the protesters lamented.

All calls and messages put to the chairman of the LOC, Solomon Ogba, were rebuffed as at the time of filing in this report.

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