Former President of the Nigeria Labour Congress (NLC), Comrade Adams Oshiomhole, has urged the leadership of organized labor to prioritize the welfare and rights of Nigerian workers over personal political interests. Speaking after a meeting with Vice President Kashim Shettima at the State House, Abuja, Oshiomhole expressed reservations about the nationwide strike called by the NLC and TUC, stating that it doesn’t adequately address the crucial issues facing workers.
Oshiomhole, a serving Senator representing Edo North Senatorial District and a former Governor of Edo State, emphasized his commitment to the cause of labor but disapproved of the ongoing strike. He urged the NLC and TUC to engage with state governments that are not implementing agreed-upon wages for workers, rather than focusing solely on the federal government.
While acknowledging that labor cannot be apolitical, Oshiomhole advised against actions that could be seen as partisan. He emphasized the need for labor to prioritize holding state governments accountable for implementing the N30,000 minimum wage. He questioned why the NLC was not mobilizing strikes against states that were not complying with the approved minimum wage while targeting the federal government.
Oshiomhole, who is also a former National Chairman of the ruling All Progressives Congress, urged labor to engage more vigorously on issues like unpaid salaries but cautioned against actions perceived as overtly partisan. He encouraged a focus on addressing the hierarchy of workers’ needs and holding state governments accountable for wage agreements.