Em­ploy­ers, NLC bicker over pick­et­ing of banks

Daily Trust - - BUSINESS - From Mo­hammed Shosanya, Lagos

Nige­ria Em­ploy­ers Con­sul­ta­tive As­so­ci­a­tion (NECA) and the Com­rade Joe Ajaero fac­tion of the Nige­ria Labour Congress (NLC) are cur­rently at dag­gers drawn over the de­ci­sion of the lat­ter to picket banks that sacked their em­ploy­ees re­cently.

The Ajaero group had last week said it would go ahead to picket such banks on the strength that its group was not con­sulted in a pur­ported meet­ing held with stake­hold­ers to shelve the ac­tion.

This po­si­tion is at vari­ance with the Com­rade Ayuba Wabba group’s which had stayed ac­tion on the planned pick­et­ing af­ter meet­ing with con­cerned par­ties in the dis­pute.

Speak­ing at a press con­fer­ence in Lagos, Di­rec­tor Gen­eral of NECA, Mr. Se­gun Oshi­nowo, said his as­so­ci­a­tion would not di­a­logue with ‘rogue NLC’ on the premise that the Ajaero fac­tion was not recog­nised by law.

He im­plored the min­is­ter for Labour to re­sus­ci­tate the NLC case in the Na­tional In­dus­trial Court (NIC) in or­der to have a clear pic­ture on who the sub­stan­tive pres­i­dent of NLC is.

“We had a meet­ing with the sub­stan­tive Pres­i­dent, Com­rade Ayuba Wabba, that the law recog­nised the bank cri­sis with labour. We are ready to write the IGP and the min­is­ter to cau­tion the body of NLC that pa­raded it­self as a le­gal en­tity.

“I want to plead with the me­dia to stop us­ing the ter­mi­nol­ogy ‘fac­tion NLC’ be­cause it is pro­mot­ing the body. The key con­clu­sion we reached with NLC dur­ing our meet­ing in Abuja is that the right of em­ploy­ers must be re­spected.

“We also found out that Fidelity and First banks have not car­ried out any re­trench­ment while Di­a­mond Bank only did a per­for­mance ex­er­cise,” he said.

He there­fore im­plored the Min­is­ter of Labour and Pro­duc­tiv­ity, Sen­a­tor Chris Ngige and the In­spec­tor Gen­eral of Po­lice, Idris Ibrahim, to call to or­der the fac­tion of Nige­ria Labour Congress led by Ajaero over its de­ci­sion to picket banks that sacked their em­ploy­ees re­cently.

But Com­rade Ajaero in a state­ment ac­cused the NECA’s boss of col­lud­ing with anti-work­ers el­e­ments in Abuja to con­tinue en­slav­ing work­ers in the sec­tor by seek­ing to scut­tle their le­git­i­mate strug­gle for de­cent work.

He said his fac­tion’s pick­et­ing of banks af­ter the Ra­madan hol­i­days would start with NECA of­fice.

“We want to re­it­er­ate that the NLC will com­pel NECA and oth­ers to obey our laws and act re­spon­si­bly within the am­bit of in­ter­na­tional stan­dards and norms gov­ern­ing our en­gage­ment as so­cial part­ners,” Ajaero noted.

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