The Federal Ministry of Labour and Employment has declared the Quadrennial National Delegate Conference NDC of the Radio Television Theatre and Arts Workers Union of Nigeria RATTAWU which held on July 16, 2021 in Zamfara State as null and void.
The Minister of Labour and Employment, Senator Chris Ngige stated this in a letter to the Secretary General of RATTAWU titled “Re: Hosting of National Delegate Conference in Flagrant Disobedience to the Directive of the Federal Government Via The Federal Ministry of Labour & Employment: An Official Report”.
The letter signed by the Director of Trade Union Services and Industrial Relations, Mrs O.U.Akpan said the directive to declare the RATTAWU National Delegate Conference null and void is as a result of the failure of the National Officers to follow constitutional process on election of officers and total flagrant disregard to the Ministry’s directive.
According to the letter, the Ministry noted that it had directed RATTAWU to put on hold it’s National Delegate Conference until the Ministry’s dispute resolution mechanism over issues relating to the NDC was exhausted.
Senator Ngige said it’s directive was disregarded and the NDC held without the Registrar of Trade Unions in attendance.
The Letter thus read”…the ministry is in receipt of a letter from the Concerned Members and Stakeholders of RATTAWU addressed to the Honourable Minister of Labour and Employment on the above mentioned subject and also another letter from your Union with Ref No RATT/NHQ/GM/Vol 4/93 dated 28th July, 2021 introducing the newly elected National Officers of the Union (RATTAWU)at a Quadrennial National Delegate Conference (NDC)held on 16th July,2021″.
“Please recall that in a letter with Ref No ML.ITU /26/V/9 dated 14th July ,2021,the Ministry directed that the aforementioned NDC should be put on hold until the Ministry’s dispute resolution mechanism over issues relating to the NDC is exhausted .This directive was disregarded and the NDC was held without the Registrar of Trade Unions in attendance”.
“In view of the above, I am directed to inform you that the NDC of 16th July, 2021 is null and void because the constitutional process of your Union in election of officers was not duly followed and the directive of the Ministry was flouted”.
With this development, the Federal Ministry of Labour and Employment has sacked the members of the National Working Committee of RATTAWU led by the National President, Comrade Kabir Garba Tsanni, Comrade Innocent Ofuoyeandi, Delta State NLC Secretary who was elected Deputy National President in the annulled delegate Conference, Comrade Saro Ganale, VP South-South and Comrade Emeka Kalu aka Magic Finger, VP South East among others.
Prior to the Zamfara State kangaroo National Delegate Conference, the electoral committee had in a circular to all candidates said after screening,30 days will be given to candidates to campaign which was vehemently ignored by the Comrade Tsanni led NWC as he quickly organised the kangaroo NDC one week after screening because they already had a game plan based on their selfish agenda to the detriment of the members whose monthly check off dues can no longer be accounted for.
Thr candidates from across the country had expressed displeasure on the choice of Zamfara State as host for the NDC based on the high level of insecurity following series of killings, kidnappings and banditry but was also ignored.
The NLC even intervened by urging the RATTAWU NWC to give it the opportunity to mediate on the issue but was disregarded just like the proverbial saying that those the gods wants to kill they first make mad.
It is widely rumoured that the Zamfara State government gave Comrade Kabir Garba Tsanni a whooping sum of twenty million naira for the conduct of the NDC but we reliably gathered that the money was shared among his cohorts and a pal try sum spent on the kangaroo election.
The Comrade Tsanni ousted NWC can be aptly described as a bandwagon of power mongers who indulged in mass suspension of members and dissolution of state councils and setting up of caretaker committee to create fear among members.
Comrade Tsanni have been quizzed several times by the EFCC over misappropriation and embezzlement of Union’s funds which he admitted on one occasion. It is of public knowledge that Comrade Tsanni has built a palatial house and recently hosted a lavish birthday party.
Whereas the South South zone had already elected it’s Zonal Vice President in the person of Comrade Godwin Jack preparatory to his presentation as the zonal VP at the NDC, the former VP South South, Comrade Christian Saro-Ganale who was defeated in the zonal election which held in Asaba was sworn in as the South South Zonal VP.
Emeka Kalu,a grade level 7 officer who was elected as VP South East Zone in the Kangaroo NDC had singlehandedly dissolved all state councils in the zone just to force his power against the popular wishes of the people.
RATTAWU which used to be the pride in the committee of trade unions has been seriously shortchanged by those who are not interested in the growth and development of the Union but their selfish gains.
The entire South West boycotted the kangaroo NDC, in Delta State only three chapters out of the seven chapters attended.
Rivers State had only one delegate who went on his own as SEC had asked all the chapters to boycott the election.
Akwa Ibom,Bayelsa and Cross Rivers states also boycotted the delegate conference while in South East and North the story was the same.
Only about three hundred delegates attended the conference which ought to have had at least three thousand delegates from all the chapters and state councils across the federation.
Members anxiously awaits what will be the position of things in the coming days, whether the General Secretary will be made to preside over the affairs of the Union until a new delegate conference is fixed.