Ngige seeks apology from Labour over ‘invasion’

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The Minister of Labour and Employment, Dr Chris Ngige, has asked the leadership of the Nigeria Labour Congress (NLC) to apologise to him in seven days or face legal actions.

In a statement yesterday by his media aide, Nwachukwu Obidiwe, he said: “The thrust of today’s (yesterday’s) press conference by the President of the Nigeria Labour Congress (NLC), Comrade Ayuba Wabba, is predictable.

“Hence, we succinctly wish to respond that the sanctity of the provisions of Section 37 of the 1999 Constitution on the rights of all Nigerians to private life cannot be annulled by inferior provisions of the Labour Act on picketing.

“The invasion and obstruction of the private residence of the Minister of Labour and Employment, preventing him, his wife, children and families of his personal aides, quartered in the same compound and throwing them into huge trauma, is illegal and inexcusable under the guise of unionism.

“Worse, when Comrade Ayuba Wabba, with ferocious-looking drivers and thugs, invaded the house of the minister by 4 o’clock in the morning, blocking the entrance with two 33,000 litre-capacity tankers fully laden with premium motor spirit (petrol), the NLC leader was certainly not picketing. His conduct is arson with a clear intention to cause maximum destruction.

“Besides, it is important to remind the NLC that it is outside the ambit of its powers to issue directives to the Federal Government on how to carry out its responsibilities. Plans are on for the inauguration of the board of the NSITF, and it shall take place soonest.

“The minister is consulting on the appropriate legal actions against this illegality by the NLC, and is giving them seven days to tender unreserved apology or face the consequences.”

The Nation

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