The Maritime Workers Union of Nigeria (MWUN) has declared its solidarity with the Nigeria Labour Congress over protests on Kaduna State, as Governor Nasir El-Rufai threatens to arrest the union leaders.
In a statement signed on Wednesday by the President General of the MWUN, Comrade Adewale Adeyanju, and the Secretary General, Comrade Felix Akingboye, the MWUN said it was shocking that the Governor resorted to harassment and threat to the union leaders rather than seek better ways to address the labour problem in Kaduna State.
“The leadership of the Maritime Workers of Nigeria (MWUN) has received with rude shock the Kaduna State Governor’s call for the arrest and prosecution of Union leaders, who are on peaceful demonstration against maladministration.
“It is inconceivable that Mallam El-Rufai, who claimed to be one of the progressive governors, continues to intimidate, harass and even branded Union leaders who are on peaceful protest as common criminals.
“Mallam El-Rufai who probably is still living in Stone Age believes that he can use the instrumentality of state to suppress the rights of workers,” the statement read in part.
The MWUN further stated that it was rather expected that a democratically elected governor should “provide and maintain the welfare of its workers and not to trample upon their rights to decent work and pay.”
The statement adds that “Reports also have it that Mallam El-Rufai has organised his thugs to disrupt the peaceful demonstration of the congress and thus put the lives of the NLC leaders and members in grave danger.
“Maritime Workers Union of Nigeria hereby reiterates its solid support for the congress action and therefore calls on the Federal Government, State governors, Traditional leaders and well-meaning Nigerians to prevail on Mallam Rl-Rufai to tow the path of diligence and due process.”
On that note, the Union warned that it “shall not hesitate to withdraw the services of its members in all ports formations, jetties, terminals and oil and gas platforms, in solidarity with the congress, should El-Rufai continue to threaten the lives of congress leaders and members. ”