.. Warns Mimiko, Abdulsalam to hand off Labour Party
Obiora Ifoh, Abuja
The leadership of the Nigerian Labour Congress has vowed to commence an industrial strike or any action it deems necessary at the end of the 14- day ultimatum issued to the Federal Government if its demand is not met.
The National Executive Committee (NEC) of the Congress on Wednesday in Abuja expressed concern over the unilateral adjournment of the negotiation sine die by the federal government on the day that the tripartite committee was expected to complete his assignment.
It would be recalled that the combined labour team last week in Lagos gave the Government a 14 -day ultimatum for foot dragging on the issues of workers wages. The ultimatum will end on Wednesday 26th of September.
According to the NLC president ,Comrade Ayuba Wabba, who addressed the press after the meeting,” NEC noted that this is against the principle of collective bargaining as provided in ILO convention 98 and convention 131 on minimum wage setting process
“NEC applaud the proactive step taken by Organised Labour to preserve the collective sanctity of Nigerians and the demand that the tripartite committee reconvene within the same period to finalize the report in line with the principles of collective bargaining.
“NEC resolved that all its affiliate unions and the 36 state councils and the FCT and the joint action front communicate the decision of NEC to their members and decide that as the end of the ultimatum, if the demand of Organised Labour is not met, the leadership should declare any appropriate action or any action it deem necessary.
“NEC sympathies with Nigerians who are displaced currently by flood in several communities that has led to the loss of live, property and means of livelihood and call on government at all levels, well spirited individuals and the international community and NGOs to come to the aide of the affect persons and communities by providing assistance especially food, shelter as we,k as health and Medicare services.
“Concerned by the continuous security challenges in some states and the attendant loss of lives and property, NEC call for special attention and strategy to bring an end to this issue of insecurity considering the fact that the principle essence of government and the country is to ensure the safety and welfare of the people.
“NEC also commended our security agencies and urge government to continue to look after their welfare and wellbeing for all the sacrifice they have made to continue to make our communities safe.
On Labour Party crisis, NLC president said NEC received the report of its political commission on the problem facing the Labour Party and the attempt to forcefully take over the party including the role of individuals, especially Dr. Olusegun Mimiko and the former Chairman of the party, Comrade A. A Salam.
” Accordingly, NEC resolved and directed” that Dr. Olusegun Mimiko has no business to hijack the Labour Party.”That the existing consent judgement should be respected and enforced and that all state councils should enforce the decision to the latter.
“We also make bold to say that the party is registered by trade unions (NLC and TUC), our civil society allies, market women, students and artisans to provide a platform that is quite different from other political parties. It is a party with an ideology of social justice and also one that will be able to take care of the less privilege in the society.
“NEC has also decided that for the avoidance of doubt, we will display to the press that the certificate of registration of the party is with the NLC (display the original certificate). So nobody can claim to have it. The former Chairman who is still alive, DAN Nwanyawu, after serving his term returned the certificate to NLC.
” Therefore, anybody using counterfeit should not be regarded and that should be seen as forgery. Since then, the certificate of registration has been in our safe. Therefore, we will do everything possible to recover the party so that it can conform with the ideology of the working class.”
NLC also frowned at the collective bargaining agreements signed with government, but not implemented especially in the education and health sector and asked employers of Labour to respect and fully implement all agreement freely entered into so as to preserve industrial peace and harmony.
He said, “Given the increase tempo of political activities towards the 2019 elections, NEC urged INEC to provide a level playing ground for political parties and individuals participating in the process to ensure the conduct of a free, fair and credible election. INEC must strive to surpass its cherished record of 2015. We also call on workers across the country to participate in the process by either contesting elective position or vote and be voted for along with their families. We must vote for credible candidates with clear agenda for workers and their families. We have seen that the law has clear provisions that workers can be card carrying members of political parties.
“Also, NEC has asked that all Nigerians must work towards having a free and fair elections in 2019. Nigerians and politicians must shun the politics of do or die.
“NEC also note the dividends that democracy is supposed to bring such as democratic freedom and resolve to continue to canvass for press freedom and the rule of law and respect for human and trade union right and implore INEC and all political elites to try to enforce these provisions.”
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