Tue. Apr 16th, 2024

*As Nigeria youth rally behind NLC over dispute with Labour Party

Senator Iroegbu

In a significant development, the Trade Union veterans, who played pivotal roles in the formation and registration of the Labour Party (LP), have issued a compelling call for the resignation of Barrister Julius Abure, the National Chairman of the Party. The veterans cite alleged cases of monumental fraud by Abure, which they argued, have severely tarnished the party’s reputation.

In a press statement released in Lagos and signed by Comrade Lawson Osagie, the Trade Union veterans expressed deep regret over the deviation from the noble ideals that inspired the creation of the Labour Party. They emphasised their unwavering commitment to the principles of justice, equity, and transparency, which they fear are being undermined by Barrister Abure’s actions.

The statement highlighted the urgent need for the embattled LP Chairman to step aside as the helm of the Party. Instead, the veterans propose the appointment of a Caretaker National Chairman by the Board of Trustees, tasked with organising congresses at the state level before convening a national convention.

Among the notable figures endorsing the call for Abure’s resignation are Comrade Hassan Sunmonu, the pioneer President of the NLC; Comrade Ali Chiroma, the 2nd President of the NLC; and Comrade Aliyu Dangiwa, the pioneer General Secretary of the Congress. These veterans, alongside other esteemed leaders, were instrumental in the establishment and early development of LP.

While addressing recent remarks questioning the role of the NLC in party politics, the Trade Union veterans vehemently defended the legitimate involvement of the labour movement in shaping political discourse. They underscored the historical precedent set by the Supreme Court, affirming workers’ rights to form political parties to safeguard their interests.

Furthermore, the Trade Union veterans denounced Abure’s alleged refusal to honour a memorandum of understanding brokered by the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC). They lamented the disregard for the contributions of stakeholders who laboured tirelessly to establish the Labour Party, accusing the part chairman of pursuing hidden agendas at the expense of party integrity.

Reflecting on the arduous journey to register LP, the veterans recounted the party’s inception as the Party for Social Democracy (PSD) before adopting its current name. They emphasised the enduring legacy of the labour movement’s struggle for political representation and reiterated their commitment to upholding the founding principles of the Labour Party.

Youth rally behind NLC

In a show of solidarity with Nigeria’s labour force, the Coalition of United Nigeria Youth has thrown its weight behind the NLC in its ongoing dispute with the LP. The coalition has called upon the National Chairman of the Party, to honour the agreement he signed with former Congress, President Comrade Ayuba Wabba, which stipulates a handover of party leadership by June 2023.

The statement was issued by the Director-General of the Coalition, Comrade Miracle Nwosu, during a press briefing held in Abuja on Friday. Comrade Nwosu emphasised the coalition’s commitment to upholding justice, equity, transparency, and accountability, particularly in matters concerning the rights of Nigerian workers, youth, students, and the general populace.

Highlighting the historical ties between the NLC and the Labour Party, Nwosu reiterated that the Party was established by Congress to serve as a platform for its members to exercise and defend their rights. He urged the LP Chairman not to disregard the memorandum of understanding signed by relevant stakeholders, emphasizing the importance of adhering to agreements made in good faith.

Responding to assertions by Labour Party officials questioning the affiliation of party staff with the NLC, Nwosu reaffirmed the integral role of the Union in shaping the political landscape of Nigeria. He questioned why Nigerian workers consistently support Labour Party programs, campaigns, and candidates if there is no association between the party and the NLC.

Furthermore, Nwosu condemned attempts to malign Comrade Joe Ajaero, President of the NLC, through baseless allegations. He stressed the vital role of the NLC in advocating for the rights and welfare of workers and the broader masses, describing it as the “last hope of the masses” in Nigeria.
Nwosu called for a cessation of hostilities between the Labour Party and the NLC, urging all parties to prioritize the interests of Nigerian workers and the advancement of the nation’s democratic ideals.

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