Senator Oshiomhole Advocates Democratic Values in Critique of NLC Protest and Nationwide Strike


Senator Adams Oshiomhole, representing Edo North, voiced his concerns on Wednesday regarding a protest initiated by the Nigeria Labour Congress (NLC) in Imo State, led by President Joe Ajaero. This protest, which occurred two weeks ago, set off a series of events culminating in an ongoing nationwide strike by organized labor.

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The former NLC president, appearing on Channels Television’s Politics Today, raised questions about Ajaero’s alleged involvement in the election of the NLC chairman in Imo State, leading up to the highly anticipated governorship election. Ajaero was arrested on November 1 during a protest and strike action in the state, subsequently released with visible bruises, prompting allegations of torture against the Imo State Police Command.

Senator Oshiomhole, emphasizing democratic values, highlighted that as a consequence, the NLC president issued a directive banning flights out of Imo State. He expressed concerns about the timing of such actions and stressed the importance of allowing people to vote freely, even if they oppose the incumbent governor.

“If you don’t want the governor, the more reason you should allow the people to go and vote — and vote him out — if your opinion is shared by a majority of the people. But you cannot arrest democracy,” Oshiomhole asserted.

Drawing attention to the NLC president’s previous clash with the governor, Senator Oshiomhole pointed out that clarity on the issues was lacking. The first instance revolved around a dispute over the workers’ preference in the election of the NLC chairman in Imo State Council.

According to Oshiomhole, the NLC president, hailing from Imo State, must maintain impartiality and avoid entanglement in local issues. He criticized the president for involving himself in disputes over the NLC chairman’s election, leading to a strike declaration that impacted power supply in Imo State.

In recounting the recent events, Oshiomhole highlighted that the issues raised by the NLC president lacked specificity, and the senator urged a commitment to democratic principles even amid internal union matters.

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