THE International Trade Union Confederation (ITUC) has condemned the action of Kaduna State governor, Mallam Nasir el-Rufai, for hiring thugs to unleash violence on protesting workers on Tuesday in Kaduna.
In a letter to Governor el-Rufai, signed by Sharan Burrow, General Secretary of ITUC, entitled: “ITUC Condemns state-sponsored violence against protesting workers in Kaduna State, Nigeria”, ITUC, which represents 200 million workers in 163 countries, including Nigeria, said it was reliably informed that Governor el-Rufai “hired hooligans to violently disrupt the protest action on 18 May 2021.”
The General Secretary also condemned Governor el-Rufai for criminalising the protest by planning to arrest Comrade Wabba, NLC President, who is also President of ITUC, for an alleged offence of economic sabotage. “This showed total ignorance, on your part, of the purpose of a protest action, and your intention to criminalise a peaceful protest action is hereby condemned,” Sharan Burrow stated.
She told the governor that because Nigeria is a party to the ILO Convention on Freedom of Association and Protection of the Right to Organise, 1948 (No. 87) and the Right to Organise and Collective Bargaining, 1949 (No. 98), Kaduna State government is governed by the two conventions, and as a result, prohibited “from interfering in workers activities, which include strikes and protest actions.
The General Secretary enjoined the governor to “respect the principle of freedom of association and engage in social dialogue with trade unions to find and amicable solution in order to address the challenges.”
She counselled Governor el-Rufai to “refrain from instigating violence against our members” but to always abide by the principles of social dialogue and tripartism as enshrined in the Tripartite (International Labour Standards) Convention, 1976 (No. 144), which requires tripartite consultations between government, workers and employers.
To read the letter, click the link: ITUC International Letter to Kaduna Governor Nigeria to denounce anti-union violence