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Unpaid Pension Wages: Oruge Asked Me To Exclude NUP In Rivers NLC –Williams

WWWWThe Acting Chairman of Nigeria Labour Congress, NLC, Rivers State chapter, Prince Ada Williams has accused the embattled chairman of the State NLC, Dr. Chris Oruge of asking him to exclude the Nigerian Union of Pensioners, NUP, an affiliate body of NLC, from the activities of the state NLC, when both of them were working as chairman and vice chairman, respectively.

Comrade Williams who made the disclosure in a chat with our correspondent while reacting to the statement by the Rivers NUP chairman, Comrade Festus Abibo that Rivers NLC abandoned them in their plight, stated that Oruge technically excluded NUP in NLC affairs in the state, because he was accused of romancing with the state government by the state pensioners.

The Acting Chairman noted that Oruge was never happy with the peaceful protests that were carried out in the state, against the state government, contrary to his directives.

Responding to Abibo’s statement, Williams stated that he could not do much on the recent peaceful protest against the Rivers State Government by the state pensioners over alleged unpaid wages of about N6.5b in the last 3years, stating that the state governor, Rt. Hon. Rotimi Chibuike Amaechi decided to continue to work with Oruge, despite all documents and letters that were sent to him in respect of Oruge’s suspension from his mother union, Nigeria Union of Teachers, NUT, Rivers State.

Williams who said he spoke with the secretary of NUP, Rivers State branch on the protest, pointed that NUP and other workers in the state are suffering untold hardship, which was occasioned by the sell out of the state NLC to the state governor, Amaechi.

Williams who lauded the state governor on his quick response, shortly after the protest, added that the response helped to calm the situation and gave the needed hope to the pensioners, even though he may or may not have paid them.

He noted further that the state government should be blamed if the pensioners are allowed again to go lock the state secretariat for a second time, longer that the hours it lasted during the last peaceful protest, pointing out that the pensioners have given enough grace and warnings to the state government.

On the recent anomalies that trailed the inconclusive NLC congress, Williams said it was condemnable for NLC to have been dragged into the politics of Nigeria. He expressed that the scenario at the congress was the only option that could stop the massive rigging that took place that day.

He, however, commended the quick intervention of NLC stakeholders, which prompted the rescheduling of the congress in month of March, 2015.

Responding on the recent shooting that heralded the APC rally in Okirika, Rivers State, Comrade Williams noted that every political party has the right to campaign anywhere as stipulated by INEC, stressing that political parties should also endeavour to respect the custom and tradition of a people.

He advised that parties should not force itself on a people if the people refused to welcome them, in the interest of the lives of their followers, adding that any party that would want to impose itself on a people through the use of force will be termed a violent party.

Williams was optimistic that his matter with Comrade Oruge must be concluded before the state NLC congress, stressing that somebody must be in charge of the state, to welcome those that will be coming from outside the state.

He in the mean time condemned the politics that has taken over NLC, which according to him, has delayed the justice that was to come his way, since he has been tagged PDP candidate and Oruge, an APC candidate. ###

Elumezie Blaise

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