The Comrade Joe Ajaero-led faction of the Nigeria Labour Congress(NLC) yesterday picketed the headquarters of the Nigeria Employers Consultative Association(NECA) over its alleged role in the action against banks that sacked their workers.
The action commenced in the early hours of yesterday with the barricade of the entrance into the association’s premises and disruption of its 59th Annual General Meeting (AGM) which was billed to hold yesterday.
The action soon turned to a free-for-all following the arrival of counter-protesters who were averse to the action which caused guests, journalists and passers-by to scamper for safety.
In his address, factional President of the NLC, Comrade Joe Ajearo, took a swipe at the NECA for taking a preventive action against planned picketing of banks that sacked their staff recently.
He said the Director-General of the NECA did not have the moral right to mount a campaign against the planned action, as he emphasised that his group was not consulted in the said meeting designed to stay action on the planned picketing.
He said as an institution, the NECA ought to be in the vanguard of promoting the rights of workers and adding value to their lives instead of perpetrating moves to debase them through promotion of policies that encourage mass sack.
Speaking at a press conference, Director-General of the NECA, Mr.Olusegun Oshinowo, took a swipe at the action of the splinter group of the NLC, saying “their action is a dangerous precedent to the labour movement in Nigeria”.
He described the group as a rogue union, adding that the NECA would not dialogue with the group on the premise that “the Ajaero faction is not recognised by the law”.
“The event that happened today was a breach of the right of workers who were denied access to the premises of the NECA,” he said.
He advised the splinter group to go to court for redress rather than resorting to “act of terrorism” to resolve an industrial issue.
He blamed the police who were brought in to monitor the protest for looking the other way, while violence was being unleashed on the people.