By Moses Ebosele –
Factional President of Nigerian Labour Congress (NLC), Joe Ajaero has challenged the leadership of Nigeria Employers’ Consultation Association (NECA) to make its position known on the retrenchment in the banking sector.
In a statement issued in Lagos after the Annual General Meeting of NECA was disrupted, Ajaero said the employers and its security agencies should also be immediately arrested for allegedly being “harbingers of the violence on peaceful workers”.
According to him; “the Federal Ministry of Labour should immediately sanction NECA and its DG Olusegun Oshinowo for gross violation of the tenets and statutes governing our engagement as social partners.
“That we call on the Federal Ministry of Labour to immediately sanction the conduct of the woman who was supposed to represent them at the AGM of NECA for breach of civil service rules. She allowed herself to address the Press alongside Oshinowo over a matter that concerns a strategic social partner making a mockery of the rules that requires her to note her observations quietly and make her reports known to the Ministry to avoid prejudicing the Ministry.
“That we were surprised at the role played by the security agencies especially the Police and the DSS who were heavily present during the unfortunate incident but refused to timely intervene to save lives and properties.
“We had felt that we notified the security agencies of our intentions so as to ensure the protection of lives and property but this, they surprisingly failed to do so, leading to the injuries and losses sustained by workers and Nigerians who came out in solidarity with us”.
But, in a swift reaction, NECA denied using thugs as alleged, adding that,
“The Nigeria Employers’ Consultation Association (NECA) has observed that a section of the Press had linked it to the use of thugs and hoodlums to dislodge the illegal picketing of its premises by the unlawful faction of the Union led by Joe Ajaero”.
Director General of NECA, Mr. Olusegun Oshinowo was quoted as saying: “NECA is a law abiding organisation that will not resort to lawlessness to dislodge lawlessness. This, actually, informed our decision to invite the Police and the DSS to protect us and our premises when we got wind of the Joe Ajaero faction’s plan to picket us.”