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Published On: Wed, Mar 29th, 2017

Radio Bayelsa Staff Drags General Manager To Court Over Flogging

Bayelsa State Governor, Seriake Dickson

Bayelsa State Governor, Seriake Dickson

By Amos O?ioma
LAGOS MARCH 29TH (URHOBOTODAY)- Mr. Tonye Yemoleigha one of the four flogged by the General Manager of Glory FM in Bayelsa, Mr John Idumange says he is heading for the court to seek redress.
The lingering labour dispute at the FM station operated by Bayelsa government had reached a climax on February 22 when the General Manager reportedly flogged four union leaders on their duty posts.

The union leaders were flogged for organizing workers for a strike action.
Yemoleigha , Chairman of Radio Bayelsa Chapel of Nigeria Union of Journalists (NUJ) said on Tuesday that he has briefed his lawyer to sue for assault and defamation.
“After assaulting my colleagues and I with a cane, Idumange went on social media , precisely facebook, posting my picture with the caption “face of a fraudulent NUJ chairman” Yemoleigha said.
Yemoleigha explained that Idumange’s facebook comments had exposed his person to public ridicule and hatred as well as undermined his reputation.
“The courts are there to give us justice so I will be there. My lawyer is taking care of everything and the process will soon commence”. The Union leader said
Idumange who confirmed flogging four staff who are union leaders in self-defence, however alleged that the unions were working against his reforms to reposition the broadcast station.
“At about 7.20 p.m on February 22, the day RATTAWU and NUJ embarked on strike, I heard voices near my window.
“So I went out to see what was happening. I saw four persons, one of them a lady.
“I could recognise Tonye Yemoleigha, one of the union leaders, who was on white shirt. I asked why they were there after chasing away all the workers.
“Tonye stood up and asked if the compound belonged to me. At that point I discovered he was ready for a fight but I did not bulge.
“He brought his hands near my eyes so I blocked it. I had learnt Karate years back. One of them threw a chair at me and they all rushed to fight me. I had to fight back in self-defence.
“They could have beaten me up but my Karate skills rescued me,” he said.
The unions and John Idumane have been in a running battle since he assumed duty on December 6, 2016 over what the NUJ and RATTAWU leaders describe as abuse of authority, privilege and actions contrary to the Public Service Rules.
It will be recalled that Bayelsa House of Assembly , and Chief of Staff Mr Talford Ongolo to broker peace on January 18, 2017 had failed to restore peace at the radio station operated by Bayelsa government.
The Civil Liberties Organisation (CLO) on March 15, 2017 concluded investigations into the industrial dispute at Radio Bayelsa with a call on Bayelsa government to resolve the dispute promptly.

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