By Henry Uche
The Trade Union Congress of Nigeria (TUC) has vowed to engage the Lagos State Safety Commission (LSSC) to address issues bothering on hazards and other unsafe measures associated with some work environment both in the private and public sector in Lagos and beyond.
The chairman of TUC, Lagos Council, Comrade Gbenga Ekundayo, made this known in Lagos at a joint symposium of Nigerian Labour Congress (NLC) and Trade Union Congress (TUC) of Nigeria, with the Theme: “Covid -19 Pandemic, Social- Economic Crisis: Challenges for Decent Jobs & People’s Welfare.”
According to Ekundayo, it’s high time TUC, NLC and others looked into the health and safety of workers in their different work places to ascertain the level of compliance with safety measures put in place or otherwise by Corporate organizations both in the private and public sectors.
According to him, this is expedient following the outbreak of covid-19 and its effects in the world of work. He challenged the federal and State government to do everything legally possible to resuscitate unproductive industries to engage youth in economic activities and curb social ills.
“As we mark the 2021 Workers Day, we are out to look into the welfare and safety of our Comrades. It’s unfortunate some States are yet to implement the new minimum wage. That aside, we shall be engaging the Lagos State Safety Commission to see how workers in various Corporate organizations are faring because the welfare and safety of our Comrades are sacrosanct.
“We shall stand by every worker no matter their sphere of operation. Meanwhile, the government at all levels should go back to the drawing board and address real issues instead pilling them unsolved. We have very brilliant young people ready to make positive impacts, but there are no jobs nor enabling environment which is causing these Socio-Economic unrest. Unfortunately Nigeria today is flawed with a Political class who moves around with bullet -proof cars which are not even manufactured in Nigeria while more than two- third population are dying in abject poverty. This is wrong. Our common wealth should be felt by Nigerians not a by a very few.
H raised the alarm over the inhumane attitude of some employers of labor towards their workers, saying that they must desist from taking undue advantage of the hostile economic environment to exploit workers. He noted: “Some employers behave anyhow because they see clearly that the demand for job is greater than the supply. But it’s a bad omen. We need to be humane as humans to people working for us.
“This why Nigeria need to be reconstituted for the betterment of all. Nigerian government spend much but not on developmental Projects that can create Jobs for the people. We need to change the tide else the tension would still escalate, even those who have jobs are not safe because we have too many dependents on our necks, “he added.
Meanwhile, the National Secretary, National Consultative Front, Olawale Okuniyi, gave every labor Union in the country a 7 -Ultimatum to put its domain in order and come up with a strategy to engage the government with the sole purpose of bettering the lot of Nigerian workers.
Okuniyi added that as Nigeria is mired with insecurity and other challenges, the NLC, TUC and other Labor Unions can give directions to the government. “Labor must engage government at all levels and take their destinies into their own hands. We have given every groups 7 -Day Ultimatum to put their houses in order and come together and help the government to address these monsters troubling the country.
He added that if this administration does not do anything quickly to deliver the country from obvious Socio-Economic dungeon, it would not s well for anyone not even the government and to move about would even be precarious. “The country has sank, we need to come together now with help across lines to rescue the the economy. This administration should jettison sentiments, close ranks and engage experts from across board. The interest of the masses should be Paramount not their personal ego and aggrandizement,” he asseverated.