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The Governor of Imo State, Hope Uzodinma has declared that the President of the Nigeria Labour Congress (NLC), Joe Ajaero, is using his position to pursue the agenda of the Labour Party in Imo State.
‘Joe Ajaero is pursuing his personal interest,’ the governor said on Channels Television’s Politics Today programme on Thursday night which was monitored by The Eastern Updates.
‘He (Ajaero) has said times with number that he is a member of Labour Party (LP). He has a candidate in the election of Imo State. So, he is driving whatever programme that will give advantage to Labour Party in Imo State.’
Recall that Ajaero was attacked in Owerri last Wednesday just before a planned protest in the state to press the state government to heed the demands of the workers in the state. the NLC accused the Uzodimma government of supervising the assault on Ajaero but the government has denied the allegations.
The NLC and the Trade Union Congress (TUC) had since ordered shutdown of essential services in Imo as protest for the attack on Ajaero and declared a nationwide strike effective 14th, November, 2023.
On Wednesday, aviation unions in Nigeria directed their workers to withdraw services to all public and private Owerri flights (both inwards and outwards) with effect from midnight. The unions said the strike is indefinite until otherwise directed by the NLC and the TUC.
On Thursday, Labour picketed the Nnamdi Azikiwe International Airport in Abuja and grounded air travel activities at the airport.
Speaking on Channels Television’s programme on Thursday, Uzodinma said he does not know why the NLC leader has been hostile to his government but he looks forward to the day he will engage Labour.
‘It’s surprising that an NLC president from Imo State will be hostile to my government,’ he said.
The governor further said contrary to claims by the NLC, there were backlogs of salaries that were not paid before he came that his administration has cleared.
Uzodinma said some workers were ghost workers while some received double salaries before they were discovered and stopped.
Governorship elections will hold on November 11, 2023 in Bayelsa, Imo and Kogi states.
In Imo, Uzodinma is seeking re-election and is being challenged by 17 other candidates including Samuel Anyanwu of the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP), Labour Party (LP)’s Achonu Nneji as well as Jack Ogunewe of the Action Alliance (AA).