Street sweepers (women) in Calabar Municipality and Calabar South local governments, Cross River State yesterday staged a street protest, and barricaded Governor’s office over four months of unpaid stipends in Calabar.
The angry women In their fifties and sixties numbering over a hundred littered the front of the governor’s office with debris to show their displeasure over the delay of their salary.
One of the women, a 60-year-old Madam Nkoyo Effiong lamented that they have been abandoned to die of hunger for the past four months despite sweeping the streets on a daily basis.
“We are here to let the governor know that we have not been paid for four months. In 2015, they refused to pay us for six months and now they want to go away with our four months’ salaries.”
According to her that some of them were being paid N5,000 monthly while some were paid N10,000 monthly.
“Those of us who are sweepers are paid differently, some are paid N5,000, N8,000 and some are paid N10,000 monthly. There are those we call Wreckers and they collect N15,000 monthly. We just want them to give us our money before they leave office,” she said.
Another elderly woman in her fifties in tears, who simply gave her name as Afia lamented that they come out as early as 4:30 am, taking risks yet, they are not appreciated.
She said some were knocked down by moving vehicles and lost their lives while some have been used for money rituals or raped but they still take the risk just to have food on the table for their family.
“because by 4.30 am, you must go to your duty post, and sweep your portion which is always a Long stretch before day breaks. They take risks to come out at that time. Some of our people were killed by moving vehicles, and some even used for rituals because that time is an ungodly hour but the government is not appreciating us.”