“I equally appreciate the South-South Assistant General Secretary of Senior Staff Association of Electricity Allied Company (SSAEAC), Comrade Innocent Lord Douglas for coming all the way from Rivers State for the inauguration of Akwa State Chapter of (SSAEAC) as an affiliate body of Trade Union Congress.
“Let me use this opportunity and congratulate the pioneer Executive Council members of (SSAEAC) for emerging victorious in a free fair and transparent poll.
“As I welcome you into the fold of Trade Union Congress in Akwa Ibom State, I urged you all to hold onto the tenants and principles of (SSAEAC) and Trade Union Congress even as we promise you motherly coverage at all times.
“The task of unionism is enormous as we all know but we can overcome if we deal resolutely with the challenges faced by our members. Although the future is bright, the process to attain that bright future is a collective responsibility of all of us, let’s work in unity of purpose”, comrade Abang Said.
‘’We are inaugurating you today as the eye of the union in the state and also to pledge your loyalty to Trade Union Congress (TUC) as the umbrella body. When you are elected as an executive, it is for the service of all. You are going to have full support from TUC.
“It is not going well with people working in the electricity sector. The new Managing Director of Port Harcourt Electricity Distribution Company (PHEDC) is coming with a single plan to sack all the 120 workers and that plan is not favourable with workers. We are not comfortable with that and we are not going to accept it.’’
Comrade Douglas stated that some months ago, he had raised alarm that there is a plot by the new MD to sack the 120 workers but the company refuted the allegation, intimating that between June and yesterday, the new MD had already sacked 6 workers.
He said that if the union doesn’t stand up to resist this act of wickedness, the MD may succeed to sack all the 120 workers.
He disclosed that on the 10th of June this year, they signed a Condition of Service, an agreement between the workers and management of PHEDC but surprisingly, the management smuggled an addendum into the document without the express knowledge of the workers which they have countered it as not being part of the original document.
He also said that they have issued them a letter of rejection of the entire document which the management are yet to respond.
The Secretary decried a situation where one marketer will be serving about 2000 customers with no vehicle and other working tools for maximum productivity, saying they are bend on removing capable hands to crumble the industry.
“Instead of management to provide services to protect workers, they are trying to eliminate those who are working for them to earn the money. If you have swift action to employ people, you should also be swift to give them working tools. They are trying to remove the capable hands to crumble the industry. We are not going to close our eyes while our members are sacked.
He also called on the state government, State House of Assembly, media and civil society organizations to come to their aid in ensuring that electricity workers are protected from unfair treatment by management of the company. A Constitution and other regalia of the union including hat were presented to the new executive.
Trade Union Congress Of Nigeria Registers New Affiliate In Akwa Ibom Dtate
Those inaugurated were: Ifiok Ime Utin – Chairman, Chidiadi Alagbo Amadi – Vice Chairman, and Michael James Lawson – Secretary.