Security agents in Rivers State yesterday prevented the President of the Nigerian Labour Congress (NLC), Mr. Ayuba Wabba, from addressing workers at the state secretariat, The Guardianreports.
Wabba, who was to address the workers, said their action was in breach of the workers freedom of assembly and association. The union leaders, who had gathered at the secretariat, were disrupted when the security agents dismantled the rostrum prepared for him.
They locked the gates leading to the secretariat to prevent people from leaving and coming into the secretariat. When Wabba could not enter the secretariat, the workers proceeded to the Nigeria Union of Journalists (NUJ) secretariat to address the workers.
Wabba said any government that has nothing to hide would not be hostile to the gathering of workers.
“Despite the hostility that I have seen, there is no basis to lock out workers, if we don’t have anything to hide. Everywhere we have gone to, we have been received with open hands. We are surprised that there was an attempt to coarse the workers to deprive them of interfacing.
“Our constitution is very explicit on the issue of freedom of association, particularly Section 40, which makes freedom of association a human and trade union right,” he said.