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Trade Union Congress (TUC) Preaches Peace, Unity

Kayode Adelowokan, Lagos

The President of the Trade Union Congress of Nigeria (TUC), Comrade Bobboi Bala Kaigama, has called on all Nigerians to come together so as to foster unity, peace, reconciliation and development as it remains the only way the country can belong to the leading nations of the world.

President of the Trade Union Congress of Nigeria (TUC), Comrade Bobboi Bala Kaigama

President of the Trade Union Congress of Nigeria (TUC), Comrade Bobboi Bala Kaigama

Kaigama who was speaking on the state of the nation at a press conference in Lagos on Monday, December 16, 2013, said the proposed national conference is a step in the right direction if and only if it is done in good faith.

Indeed, the TUC boss said there is need for the people to dialogue and agree on the terms to boost the country’s unity and address her myriad of problems. “Nigeria is one country in spite of its varying cultures, religion and ethnic nationalities and we can only succeed as a nation if we stay united”, he added.

In his word, “The unity factor is a major factor militating against the dreams of the founding fathers of our country. One cannot deny the fact that we have recorded some landmark achievements since the colonial masters left our shores, but again, one must also make it emphatically clear that our achievement so far is not commensurate with the resources that nature has bequeathed to us.

“Our case is a paradox of sorts; the more Nigerians renew hope and faith in the country, the less the returns from the system. Is it not paradoxical that we were more united in the sixties than today?  Our children at ages 10, 11, or 12 could travel anywhere on their own and no foreboding but can this happen today?

“Internationally, we have not fared better. The capacity and capabilities of our people to rise to a level where citizens could enjoy an internationally acceptable standard of living, thus earning the status of a developed nation has always been frustrated by a few privileged people.

“All hands must be on the deck to foster unity, peace, reconciliation and development as these remain the only way the country can belong to the leading nations of the world. The time for the leadership to work tirelessly to promote the tenets of democracy and good governance is now. There is a dire need for them to be responsible!”

The labour leader maintained that Nigeria is yet to be at the dreamed state of every conscious citizen.

“Unfortunately, each time we lament the state of the economy, we are told that the military disrupted everything, even 14 years after. Those still blaming the military for stunting Nigeria’s growth should have a rethink. This is the time for the leadership to join in the present crusade to reinvent and transform Nigeria. We cannot afford to pass the buck. The responsibility to make a difference is in all of us. Every Nigerian should resolve that there shall be no trading of blames or passing the buck. ‘The buck stops here’ should be our new creed”, he mentioned.

Comrade Bobboi Bala Kaigama however urged every politician to reflect on the dynamics of a true democracy and work towards improving the national life of the citizenry.

He warned that as Nigeria journey to nationhood, it must be conscious of the dangers ahead amongst which he said is dearth of institutions.

“What we have today in our country is predominance of powerful individuals as presidents or heads of state, Governors, ministers, director generals, captains of industries, etc. instead of powerful institutions. No country makes progress anywhere in the world where we have powerful individuals as opposed to powerful institutions.

“Nigeria deserves more than she has attained so far. Nigeria is in want of committed leaders in the stature of Mandela. Sometimes I ask myself why we are so bless. Is it that ‘the beautiful ones are not yet born?’ As Ayi Kwei Armah said in Ghana or is our case that of Water! Water! Everywhere and none to drink? But there is hope: constitutional conference is it!”

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