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Resign your position to contest Chairmanship, Labour Party mocks NLC President

 

The leadership of the Labour
Party has asked the President of the Nigeria Labour Congress (NLC), Comrade Joe
Ajero to resign his position in order to contest for the Chairmanship of the
party since he appears desperate to replace Julius Abure.

 

National Publicity Secretary of
the LP, Obiora Ifoh, said this in a statement, in Abuja, on Saturday.

 

He said the party’s attention was
drawn to a Press Release titled ‘A misadventure in political mischief,
mismanagement and misdemeanor gone too far’ written by the NLC’s Political
Commission as an agent of the Nigeria Labour Congress.

 

The NLC letter he said, did not
come to party leaders as a surprise or a shock, because it was long expected
before now, having known that the NLC was going to engage itself on this
misadventure.

 

Ifoh said, “Nigerians will recall
that in 2014, NLC has been involved in a war of blackmail and attrition against
the Labour Party and its leadership.

 

“It was only recently, following
the civil and diplomatic approach adopted by Barrister Julius Abure when he
assumed leadership that he was able to get the then President of the NLC, Ayuba
Waba and the then President of the Trade Union Congress, Olaleye Quadri to a
truce where the NLC, TUC and Labour Party agreed to work together in harmony.

 

“Unfortunately, the rascality of
the current president of the NLC, Joe Ajaero has destroyed the successes
already recorded. It must be noted that the NLC and its political commission
have become a bundle of contradiction and paradox.

 

“The Nigeria Labour Congress has
written several letters to the Independent National Electoral Commission, INEC
and to the party on the need to conduct a national convention.

 

“In fact, the NLC has queried
even the rationale behind the one year extension which was graciously granted
by the NEC in session in Asaba, which is in line with the party constitution.

 

 “The leadership of the party in its wisdom has
decided to yield to their agitation for a convocation of a national convention.

Article 14:4b of our party
constitution mandates the National Secretary in consultation with the National
Chairman to ‘issue notices of meetings of National Convention, NEC, NWC amongst
others.

 

“ It is in the exercise of this
power that the national chairman and national Secretary have called for the
convention following the decision of the national executive council of the
party.

 

“It is therefore ironical for the
same NLC which has been agitating for a convention to now be demanding the
rationale for the call for a convention.

 

“At this point, the leadership of
the party wants to ask the NLC, what exactly do they want? If Joe Ajero is
interested in the leadership of the party, he is therefore advised to resign as
the President of the NLC and join in the contest for the National Chairmanship
of the party that is scheduled for the convention on the 27th of March, 2024.”

 

He further said, “We must note
that undue interference by the Nigeria Labour Congress on the affairs of the
party has become worrisome and it has become needful to emphasis here the
distinction that the Labour Party has a life of its own different from that of
the Nigeria Labour Congress.

 

“ In fact, the 1999 Constitution
states clearly that once a political party is registered, it has a life of its
own whereby it can run it’s own affairs without any interference.

 

“The Electoral Act and the
Constitution provide that no organisation can own any other organisation. The
NLC as an organisation can not claim the ownership of the Labour Party.

 

“The constitution of the party is
clear that it is only those who subscribe to the party and those who are
financial members of the party are the owners of the party and therefore can
have a say on the affairs of the party.

 

“The interference of the present
leadership of the NLC on the party is really choking and we can hardly breath.
It is this NLC leadership which pressured on the Party not to give His
Excellency, Alex Otti the governorship ticket for the 2023 general election on
the ground that he was allegedly not workers’ friendly when he was a Chief
Executive of a bank.

 

“But today, that same Alex Otti
is doing Labour Party proud with the work he is doing in Abia state.

 

“Again, the same NLC attempted to
prevail on the leadership of the party to upload a different candidate other
than Senator Athan Achonu after he won the Imo state party primaries under the
Labour Party.

 

“It will shock Nigerians to know
that members and officials of the NLC are not even card carrying members of the
Labour Party. All over the country, NLC members have been found to be
supporting either the APC or the PDP.

 

“It is again of importance to
make certain clarification as to the so called judgements that were referred to
by the NLC, we must indicate clearly that the Labour Party is not in default of
any court judgment whatsoever.

 

“The agreement reached by the NLC
to call for a convention is what we are following, we have fully implemented
that agreement and the convention is in line with the agreement. We are
therefore not in any default of court judgment as erroneously implied by the
NLC.

 

“We therefore want to advise the
NLC and its commission that it should focus only on its statutory
responsibilities of defending the workers and the workers’ right.

 

“Today minimum wage is N30.000
while a bag of rice is N80.000. We hear NLC talk about ethos and ethics of the
Labour movement and the Labour Party, this is also an NLC that cannot call or
sustain a strike for one or two days without calling it off.

 

“This is an NLC which cannot
think of calling a protest and sustaining it in order to get the attention of
the government for the interest of the workers.

 

“The present NLC should take a
time to listen to the opinion Nigerians have formed about them. Can the NLC of
today in any way be compared to NLC of the then Hassan Sumounu, Adams
Oshiohmole and a few others in the past?”

 

The party equally advised Joe Ajero
to emulate leadership of Ayuba Waba, Olaleye Quadri and Osifo in working
closely with the party.

 

It noted that the ill-intended
Press Release by the Political Commission also made a reference to spurious
allegations made by the suspended National treasurer, Oluchi Opara and it
attempted to give it some credence.

 

Adding, “This clearly exposes the
mischief by the NLC to hoodwink the people. We have stated clearly that the
total money received by the party was N1.3 billion and no other report has
contradicted it.

 

“So for the NLC to be quoting
that spurious allegations goes to show that they are part of the challenges
Labour Party has been facing.

 

“We are shocked that NLC which
was a victim of a recent harassment, threat to life and brutalization of its
president would express shock over similar treatment meted to our chairman,
Barrister Julius Abure who was brutalized for political reasons and nothing
more.

 

“We must also state clearly that
our leader, Peter Obi made reference to the audit of the campaign account and
not forensic audit for the Labour Party. In any case, we have stated clearly
that the Labour Party is open to forensic audit of its accounts.

 

We are even calling on the NLC to
send its own external auditors to check our financial books. We are also
calling on Peter Obi to expedite action on the auditing of our accounts. And
for the NLC to be using this as a cheap blackmail is to show their high level
of desperation and mischief.”

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