Hoodlums invade Imo NLC secretariat, attack workers, destroy property
Factional group emerges, backs Uzodimma
Hoodlums invaded the Imo State Secretariat of the Nigeria Labour Congress (NLC), yesterday in Owerri, beat up some workers, as well as vandalised and carted away some of the union’s property.
The identity of the hoodlums could not be immediately ascertained as at press time, but shortly after the incident, members of a faction of NLC, led by one Ndubuisi Ucheghara, installed themselves as interim leaders of the union, insisting that they had sacked the Austin Chilakpu-led executive.
Members of the new group headed to the Government House, Owerri, and presented themselves to Governor Hope Uzodimma as the interim leaders of the congress.
Ucheghara told Governor Uzodimma that their emergence followed a vote of no confidence passed on Chilakpu.
He accused Chilakpu of running the workers union in the state in deceit and the disgusting manner in which he confronts the state government to the detriment of workers welfare, noting that the new interim leadership would partner with the state government as stipulated in NLC’s constitution with a view to ensuring harmony.
“Labour exists to complement government and as such, it cannot fight the government, because when its leadership fights government, the workers suffer,” he said.
Ucheghara urged Governor Uzodimma to address the promotion of Imo workers, which the last exercise took place in 2014 and appealled to the governor to direct the state’s Head of Service (HoS) to ensure that the issues are tackled.
Responding, Uzodimma expressed the willingness of his administration to work with the group, stressing that he was one of them.
Reminding the group of the things he had done for the workers since assuming last year, he said: “My government will work with you with all sincerity of purpose. I am one of you
“The labour leadership tried to compound their problems by calling for a strike when the government had shared verification forms to enable them to state clearly their employment history and what their problem was.
“The union should be led by serving workers, while retired ones should join the Nigeria Union of Pensioners (NUP),” he admonished.