Ola Ajayi – Ibadan
Following friction between sacked local government chairmen and the new caretaker of councils selected by Governor Seyi Makinde, the Nigerian Union of Local Government Employees (NULGE) in Oyo State has directed its members to down tools pending the resolution of the controversy.
The two parties have been laying claims over the control of the council.
Arising from an emergency meeting in Ibadan on Saturday, the state executive council of NULGE led by the state Chairman of NULGE, Alhaji Bayo Titilola-Sodo, said, “Our members are in fear of a possible outbreak of violence. We have been following the news in the social media and the newspapers and sometimes letters were published.
“We don’t know the authenticity, but we have reasons to be apprehensive of the safety of our members. Should they go to work and these people take on each other, what happens?
“A few months ago, when one party decided to go to the office relying on one authority or the other while the other party is still occupying the office, there were altercations.
“Today, we held a meeting that in order to safeguard the lives of our people, our members should stay away from offices until the weather is clearer until we know who exactly we are working with and until our safety is guaranteed.”
“Until our own security and safety are guaranteed, we shall stay away. We had the State Administrative Council meeting followed by the State Executive Council meeting. The decision was taken by the SEC, which is the highest decision making authority of our union in this state.
“We reviewed the situation on the ground and found out that it is in our best interest and in the interest of our members to stay away from work before they turned our offices into battlegrounds”.
“You can go to work at your own risk; you have been warned; you have been advised to stay away. No-one would be enforcing this, but we believe that our members would comply,” he noted.