From Adanna Nnamani, Abuja
The Trade Union Congress of Nigeria (TUC) has said the lamentations of the Kaduna State Governor, Mallam Nasir El Rufai claiming that bandits were running a parallel government in his state, showed that Nigeria had lost it as a nation.
TUC President, Festus Osifo who condemned the gross manifestation of insecurity in the country, said such complaints coming from a state governor should serve as an alarm for President Muhammadu Buhari and the entire security team to act swiftly and address the situation.
Osifo also condemned and rejected the planned privatization of government-owned hospitals, saying the move will worsen the hardship and sufferings of citizens in the country .
The TUC President spoke on Friday while presiding over the National Administrative Council (NAC) Central Working Committee (CWC) and National Executive Council (NEC) meeting of the Union in Abuja.
Also reacting to the ongoing strike by the Academic Staff Union of Universities (ASUU), he maintained the need for government to develop the willpower to resolve the crisis, end the dispute with striking university workers and re-open the institutions shut down for almost six months.
According to him, all the contentious issues relating to the ASUU strike and other unions within the university system can be resolved within the next 24 hours if government is willing.
He recommended that blocking the nation’s border posts or effectively manning them to prevent the illegal export of petroleum products to neighbouring countries could save the nation surplus funds to meet the demands of the striking university workers.
The TUC Leader said“Only recently, the Kaduna State Governor Mallam Nasir El-Rufai complained that bandits are running a parallel government within his state by collecting tax returns from local communities, especially farmers, such a scenario shows that we have lost it as a nation, NEC in Council hereby calls on the Nigerian government, the President Muhammadu Buhari to desist from lamentations and act swiftly.
“We also use this opportunity to call on the Nigerian military and the entire security chiefs to act swiftly otherwise tomorrow might be too late.
“Privatization of power sector and public heath institution was frowned at by SSAEC and NUAHP all affiliate of congress opposing privatization of the power and health sectors of the economy, which will reduce significantly the membership strength of the unions, NEC will take a position and issue a statement conveying our rejection of the privatization of the power sector and the hospitals”.
On the issue of court case arising from his emergence as the new president, Comrade Osifo said that the CWC had looked at the issues critically and noted the need to explore whatever option it can towards an amicable resolution with aggrieved affiliates with the hope of bringing them back to the fold.
He said, “Our procedure of amicable resolution, is not restricted to the court only. We shall strive through all available means at our disposal to pursue amicable resolution with our colleagues, we believe and strongly too that we are stronger together”.
The CWC also resolved that all affiliates, effective from 1 September, 2022 shall commence the remittance of 10 percent of their income to the congress, in compliance with the constitution of the TUC, Nigeria.
According to Comrade Osifo, the move is to enable congress actualize the vision of the Osifo lead administration to reposition the congress.
Meanwhile, TUC has resolved to relocate its corporate headquarters from Lagos to Abuja. The relocation was part of deliberations at the just concluded NEC meeting.
TUC also appointed Nuhu Toro as substantive Secretary General, to replace Ozi Musa Lawal who died when bandits attacked the Abuja-Kaduna bound train a few months ago.