Kamarudeen Ogundele, Ado Ekiti
The Nigeria Labour Congress and Trade Union Congress in Ekiti State have banned their former state chairmen, Messrs Ayodeji Aluko and Kolawole Olaiya, respectively for 10 years.
The two men were found guilty of leading a protest and declaring a strike without authorisation.
During the protest, the two men led others to attack workers at the state Secretariat for refusing to embark on the industrial strike.
They also proclaimed the dissolution of the incumbent state executive council of the two trade unions for alleged compromise and inability to declare indefinite strike over non-payment of salary.
However, a joint session of the NLC and TUC held in Ado Ekiti on Monday and attended by representatives of all affiliated unions, found the two men guilty of anti-labour activities.
The session also passed a vote of confidence on the NLC chairman, Ade Adesanmi, and his TUC counterpart, Odunayo Adesoye.
Addressing journalists after the session, Adesanmi, called on security agencies in the state to caution the two men, alleging that they were bent on destabilising Ekiti to get political patronage from the incoming governor, Dr Kayode Fayemi.
“The illegal activities of the aforementioned ex-labour leaders acting under the guise of Ekiti Workers Rescue Team came to a climax on Thursday, August 23 when they gathered thugs and molested workers
who were carrying out their legitimate and lawful duties.
“There is need to ask them; whose interest were they protecting, because they didn’t act when workers were owed over eight months salaries?
“They have never engaged the government to pay pensioners but they only woke up after the July 14 governorship election.
“Sometimes ago, an administrative panel was set up by the outgoing government of Governor Ayodele Fayose against Aluko and found him guilty of participating in electioneering in 2015, which was against a public servant. It was the same unions that intervened and ensured that he was pardoned.
“It is no more news that Com. Aluko was promoted to the position of Director of Administration at the local government ahead of his seniors and the government looked at this and reverted him to the rightful position. It was clear that this ex-labour leader is aggrieved. But must he hide under non-payment of salary to get at the government?
“How could labour leaders gather thugs and pronounce the entire labour structure dissolved. Were they State Executive Council of the labour unions? The two of them are not members of SEC, where now did they derive such powers.
“With their actions of recent, it is clear that they were only clearing the coast for political appointments from the incoming government and not fighting the interest of workers.
“Following these, they are declared persona non-grata in labour circle and they are banned from labour activities for a period of ten years,” he said.
Efforts to reach Olaiya and Aluko on Monday were not successful as they could not be reached on their mobile lines.