• Friday, March 01, 2024
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Jonathan seeks labour’s support for Nigeria’s rebirth


President Goodluck Jonathan, Thursday, in Abuja sought the support of the organised labour in building a Nigeria that represents hope for her citizens in the now and the future.

The president’s plea is coming as Governor Adams of Oshiohmole and former president of the Nigeria Labour Congress (NLC) has expressed reservations about the readiness of the political class to support and give backing to free and fair elections come 2015 given the disagreement and crisis rocking the recent Nigeria Governors’ Forum’s (NGF) election which ended up in two governors, Rotimi Amaechi of Rivers and Jonah Jang of Plateau State, laying claim to the position of chairman.

Both spoke at the 9th triennial delegates’ conference of the Trade Union Congress of Nigeria (TUC) ongoing in Abuja.

The conference is expected to produce a new president-general of the TUC who, along with other elected national officers, will run the affairs of the labour centre for the next three years.

Peter Esele, the incumbent president-general steps down today after a two-term tenure totaling six years.

President Jonathan represented at the event by Emeka Wogu, minister of labour and productivity, recalled the critical role of labour in nation building which he emphasised should be brought to bear this time in rejuvenating the economy.

He said the ten-point agenda of his administration touching on various sectors of the economy including power, agriculture, oil and gas, manufacturing and job creation, security, education, infrastructure, among others, was beginning to yield results and all the government needed is the support of the labour movement for his team to continue to drive the reform process.

The president noted that the declaration of the state of emergency in Yobe, Borno and Adamawa states was to forestall further wastages in lives and properties and provide the enabling environment for economic activities. According to him, the action is already yielding the expected results as normalcy is returning to the troubled states.

Still on efforts to strengthen the economy, Jonathan said that multi-billion dollar businessman, Aliko Dangote, has been given licence to build a private refinery which, in addition to existing ones in the country, will go a long way in creating jobs and reducing the nation’s dependence on imported refined petroleum products.

Oshiohmole, speaking at the event held at the International Conference Centre, expressed pessimism about the possibility of free and fair elections in 2015.