By Gift Olivia Samuel, The Sight News
Abuja-The General Secretary, Public Services International(PSI), Rosa Pavanelli has on Wednesday revealed, that public service workers providing health services in the Internally Displaced Persons (IDPs)camps in Nigeria, are working under unbelievable and impossible conditions.
“They are detained as well as the people that are displaced in those camps and many of them are volunteering” Pavanelli disclosed.
The PSI General Secretary who made these disclosures in Abuja when she visited the Leadership of the Nigeria Labour Congress (NLC), said that the Service has been working in the past months, looking at the conditions of public service workers providing services in the Internally Displaced Persons Camps, adding that lack of fundamental human rights, are part of the causes of the insurgency.
According to her, “Working for months, providing services to people without being paid, is unacceptable under any circumstances and in any place, and that unfortunately is what is happening in Nigeria. This means that you have millions of people displaced with no access to fundamental human rights such as health, education, water sanitation and a decent life.
“In a country which is rich with resources and can have wealth to redistribute but is oppressed by the greed of international capitals that want to grasp the resources and forget the people and unfortunately political parties and government that are not keen to represent most part of the society, those who contribute to create the wealth of the country, the workers”, she remarked.
Pavanelli, stated that PSI is working to collect the information and to work with its affiliates to try to bring those arguments to the government, adding that they are also working to collect these information, bring the argument to the developed world where the lives of migrants and refugees are being considered as invaders and enemies that need to be fought with walls.
In her words, “It is not walls that PSI is working for, PSI is working for bridges and this is why I am here to bring the solidarity and the effective work that we can do and develop together, we don’t want a future that is governed by a few”.
She further noted that public services are under attack and the financial market is trying to grasp the public service which is an avenue to make money due to its numerous sectors such as energy and power, housing, pharmaceutical and more.
Speaking on the the issue of privatisation of pension funds, she stressed that Nigeria does not have to privatise the fund, as it will put the future of the pensioners and the workers who contribute to the pension funds at stake.
Also speaking on Public Private Partnership(PPP), she stressed that privatisation through PPP does not provide better services, adding that PPPs are a complete failure and dangerous as they are tools to privatise services, reduce workers conditions and wages, reduce the quality of the service itself and also an instrument that can affect the financial stability of government.
Earlier, the NLC President,Comrade Ayuba Wabba while briefing the Press on his earlier interaction with the General Secretary, said, that the attention of the labour movement is on the pension fund, adding that the Congress will continue to ensure that the pension fund is not for any reason utilised outside the guidelines.
“We have also discussed the issue of how to secure the pension funds from being looted or from being invested in very risky ventures and we told her clearly that the current guideline by PENCOM which has the input of labour is to the effect that those funds cannot be invested in any risky venture” he said.
In the area of privatization, he insisted that the Congress is against the privatization of any public service from health to education to civil service, and also discouraged the use of consultants in the civil service.
The Public Services International(PSI) represents about a 30 million workers in public services in 170 countries of the world.