President of NURTW Accuses Simon Lalong of Favoritism in Union Reconciliation

Bias Accusations in NURTW Reconciliation Process

Union President Accuses Labor Minister

The President of the National Union of Road Transport Workers (NURTW), Alhaji Tajudeen Baruwa, has leveled accusations of bias against the Minister of Labour and Employment, Simon Lalong, in the ongoing reconciliation process.

Baruwa alleges that Lalong is showing favoritism towards the Alhaji Tajudeen Agbede-led faction of the Union.

Claims of Favoritism

These allegations were made public through a statement issued by the General Secretary of the Union, Comrade Anthony Asogwa Chukwudi, in Abuja.

Baruwa claims that Minister Lalong conducted a secret meeting with the Agbede faction of the Union on October 18, 2023, during which he allegedly advised them to organize a new National Quadrennial Delegates Conference.

Baruwa contends that such advice contradicts the Union’s constitution, specifically Article 8, Section 2 (1).

Constitutional Contravention

Comrade Chukwudi emphasized that the Union’s constitution, approved by the Ministry of Labour and Employment, specifies that the quadrennial delegates’ conference should be held in August every four years.

Baruwa expressed his concern that a government official, expected to be an impartial mediator, would make statements that exacerbate the Union’s problems.

Minister’s Alleged Encouragement

President Baruwa further claimed that an undisclosed source who attended the meeting stated that Minister Lalong explicitly encouraged the Agbede group to proceed with the new conference, emphasizing that they should prevent the Union from disintegrating due to one individual.

Baruwa expressed his disappointment that such statements were coming from a government official.

Continued Faction Operations

President Baruwa also expressed shock upon discovering that the Agbede-led faction continues to operate at the National Secretariat of the Union, despite Minister Lalong’s directive on October 9, 2023, which suspended all operations of both factions.

Baruwa, in conclusion, called on Minister Lalong to reconsider his actions and avoid further undermining the reconciliation process within the Union.

He stated, “It is most unfortunate and unbecoming of the Minister, a lawyer, to be seen supporting or legitimizing lawlessness and a ‘civilian coup d’état.'”

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