TUC canvasses free polls, pledges to safeguard democracy

THE Trade Union Congress of Nigeria (TUC) has charged political parties and their supporters to always abide by the rules in the interest of the nation.

President of TUC, Bobboi Bala Kaigama in a statement issued at the weekend urged politicians to also play by the rule of the game “because we cannot afford to have a repeat of what happened in 1993, where Nigerians in their hundreds died while running for safety”.

  According to Kaigama, every party must have equal opportunity, pointing out that the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) should ensure that voters’ cards are given to people who are yet to get theirs as there is no way it (INEC) can convince Nigerians, especially the opposition parties that it means well by postponing the election; even if its reason is genuine”.

Kaigama said: “The INEC must remember that it has repeatedly made public that it is ready for the election and we appeal to its leadership to put its acts right immediately and move on with the elections”. 

  He added: “The TUC will do everything possible to safeguard our democracy, because we fought for it. We warn all those pushing for crisis in disguise to desist from that because, the labour movement and its civil society allies will not fold its hands and watch politicians derail the democracy that some of us fought for with our lives. Again, our position is that INEC should do all it can to ensure the country is not thrown into war”. 

   The TUC boss also denied alleged plans by the congress to shut down the country if INEC should go ahead to postpone the forthcoming general elections by six weeks.

  He said: “We wish to state unequivocally that at no time did Congress issue any such statement, neither did its principals react in a telephone interview with any correspondent/media house, be it print or electronic. 

   “Our position as a Labour Centre on the forthcoming elections is not ambiguous at all. Interestingly, none of our affiliates has also contradicted our position. The Congress stands for credible elections, hence last Friday, 6th February 2015, we (Congress) organised interactive sessions with the presidential candidates of some political parties at the Sheraton Hotel, Abuja. 

“We took the risk of bringing them because we want to know what they have in stock for the Nigerian workers, and of course, the Nigerian masses.

 

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