The National Union of Road Transport workers in Plateau State on Tuesday has expressed dismay over the blocking of some major roads in the state by protesting local government workers in the state.
Alhaji Yusha’u Mohammed the state chairman of the NURTW made this known while presenting their letter of complaint to the state Government in Jos. The National Union of Road Transport Workers an independent Nigerian trade union that serves the interests of transport workers in the road transport sector, called for a collective effort in obtaining and pushing for social stability for all workers in the transport sector as defined in its constitution.
Alhaji Yusha’u said that “Here on the Plateau, we have played a significant role in providing employment to over 24,000 young people and adults.
In his words “As a responsible privately driven organization, we are saddened by the recent development in the state as well respected unions like the NUT, NULGE and NANNM would take the law into their hands by blocking major roads in the state, disrupting vehicular movement in the name of labor demand.
They further said that we are not in government or their employers, but our members including our passengers have suffered a series of molestations in the hands of Labor members who are supposed to be our partners.
He also said that while we respect and support the right to protest and demonstrate, we condemn the molestation of innocent citizens, who are equally bestowed with a similar right to free movement.
The NURTW boss in Plateau further said that “On the 1st and 2nd of December 2020 the protesters who are a staff of Local Government blocked the state and Federal Secretariats road, their action was not only a breach of our fundamental rights as citizens but impacted negatively on our operations and commercial vehicles were left stranded and passengers frustrated, yet on the 6th of December 2020, the protesters advanced to Old airport roundabout and blocked all the roads connecting to the roundabout, which we equally suffered the same fate .”
He also said that similar incidents were recorded in Riyom, Mangu, Pankshin and Shendam LGAs.
The union also threatened to hold the state Government accountable for allowing the comrades to attack and molest its members in the name of protest.
In his words “We shall take legal actions against the government and Local government workers, we see this as an affront on our members and we shall not take it any longer, the demonstration has also affected businesses in Jos North and Jos South this is a bad development to the state.
” We have contained this situation taking into consideration the peace drive of Governor Simon Lalong, we shall no longer stand this as we have incurred great losses.
“In view of this we are left with no option than to give the state government an ultimatum of 24 hours to address the issues or we also come out to protest on the infringement of our fundamental rights as citizens of the country .”
Receiving their letter of complaint, State Governor Simon Lalong said that the payment of the new minimum wage is sacrosanct.
Represented by his Secretary to the Government of the state, Prof Danladi Atu said Government is assuring its citizens, workers and nonworkers that it has their interest at heart and will not do anything deliberately to shortchange them in any way.
He said the state government is holding several meetings with the LGA workers to meet their demands.
The State Government has expressed its determination to pay the N30,000 minimum wage and would keep to its promise.
Commissioner of Police in Plateau state Mr. Edward Egbuka who spoke earlier appealed to the LGA workers to embrace dialogue rather than resort to blocking roads.