NOW, more than ever before, the pressures confronting Nigerian workers and the trade union movement have increased and taken on greater dimensions.”
These were the words of President of United Labour Congress of Nigeria, ULC, Joe Ajaero, while addressing workers and guests at the Surulere, National Stadium venue of the May Day Rally, by ULC affiliates and friends.
According to him: “We have observed the dangerous tendencies of our social partners to commit to acts that increasingly endanger our survival as workers and trade unions. These mounting global and local challenges have remained unabated and stand at the threshold of history. With our jobs disappearing; while work is becoming increasingly precarious and our workplaces becoming centres of stress, inequality and wanton deprivation, the ability of trade unions to function effectively has become grossly compromised.
“The lessons of the Minimum Wage struggle are still very fresh in our minds. The resistance to workers’ interests and the various impediments consciously erected by the government, bears greater testimony on the urgent and clear need for the movement to actively work together in pursuing our objectives at all levels of engagement.
“We remain one people with one ideology. Our destinies are tied together and any leader of our movement that lacks this understanding is not worthy of our proud traditions. Our individual ambitions and desires must all be subjected to the collective will. It is only by acting and working together that we can hope to achieve in a sustainable manner our individual objectives while lifting workers and the masses from the doldrums of servitude, hunger and poverty.
“ULC remains vibrant and more united internally than ever before. We have become stronger and growing. We have widened and deepened our reach. More than ever before, we have become more strategically positioned to engage our social partners as a virile platform to deliver benefits to our affiliates, Nigerian workers, Nigerian masses and indeed, our social partners.
We have played more active roles in the affairs of our affiliates and indeed, in most of the theatres of engagement where our contributions were needed. Once again, we assure you that we shall do more in the remaining months of this year.” and in coming years.
“To this end, we promise to continue the struggle for Justice in the Aviation industry; the Telecommunication; the Iron, Steel and Engineering; the Oil & Gas industry; the Electricity sector, Research Institutes and indeed all the sectors where our expanding membership is located. All employers in these sectors are advised to comply with our Laws or be prepared to face the wrath of the ULC. This is our commitment and it is our vow.”