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Ayuba Wabba NLC president says greedy politicians are creating hardship for workers

Wabba said that there was therefore an urgent need to end corporate greed at all levels of the nation’s governance system.

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(The Eagle Online)

The President of the Nigerian Labour congress (NLC), Mr Ayuba Wabba, has said that greed by political offices holders has continued to create hardship and exploitation of workers in the country.

Wabba said this at the International Trade Union Congress (ITUC-Africa) Regional Conference on "Advancing Decent Work in Global Supply Chain in Africa ' which began in Abuja on Monday.

The conference was organised by the NLC in collaboration with ITUC-Africa.

Wabba said that there was therefore an urgent need to end corporate greed at all levels of the nation’s governance system.

He also said the ills and inequalities of multinational enterprises had left scars on the people.

‎"Comrades and friends, on the issue of fighting to halt and ultimately end corporate greed, we are all witnesses to the ills and iniquities of multinational enterprises.

``From 2007-08 when corporate greed and market rascality plunged the world into a financial and, later, harrowing economic crisis, working men and women, pensioners and communities suffered immense losses.

`` Till date, the miseries and hardship caused by their reckless and greedy actions left have scars on people, households, communities and economies,” he said.

Wabba blamed politicians for “offensive concessions to businesses and providing them tax havens.

‎``Shockingly, rather than side with their people, constituents and constituencies, politicians and governments have continued to make obscene and offensive concessions to businesses.”

He said that the elites have been providing them tax havens to hide their criminal and corrupt wealth and loot.

``For the poor and other citizens, they have rewarded them with damning, hard and biting austerity measures,” Wabba said.

He said that this had resulted in stagnant living and working conditions with the poor getting poorer, whilst the rich, richer at the expense and damnation of the poor.

Wabba said that African trade unions have longed resolved to move away from lamentation and self-pity.

``We have warmly welcomed the initiative of the ITUC to aggressively drive this campaign aimed at halting and reversing corporate greed and their effects on workers, women, our communities and economies, ''he said.

Mrs Sharan Burrow, General Secretary, ITUC-Africa , in her address , urged African leaders to address the issues of social security, minimum wage, inequality, unemployment as it affect workers in their countries.

Burrow said this was imperative due to the economic recession that had affected the world globally.

``Since the global crises, the global economy is simply failing; there has been massive unemployment and inequality in the Africa and around the world.

``Internally Generated Revenue have continue to drop in the global economy and that means something is sick in the heart of the economy and that means it is corruption and greed.

`` So, unless the wealth is share and there is social protection and a living minimum wage, only then that workers will live with dignity, ''she said.

She also identified “greed of major corporations who paid their workers with poverty wages and takes no responsibility for over 94 per cent of their workers who make their wealth for them.

``We want to say that this is unacceptable and we want to say to them that this must change.''
She called on Africa government to stand by the workers and ensure that the working people have the fundamentals of social protection to support a minimum wage that would enable them to live with dignity.

She said that government must allow collective bargaining rights, rule of law, where the court system would work quickly and efficiently to resolve industrial disputes.

``This is a simply receipt that ITUC and the ILO called decent work and it is increasingly missing from countries here and everywhere.

``When I hear that local government and states government are not paying workers or are cutting salaries it breaks my heart because this is the wage that they worked for.

``So, we stand with the Nigerian workers to renegotiate the minimum wage, to say that taxes are paid by corporate organisations, social security law are implemented with efficient tripartite system that would work, ''she added.

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