Lagos Assembly Clerk Bemoans Negative Impact of Military Regimes on Legislature

…Appeals to labour to call off planned strike

The Clerk of the Lagos State House of Assembly, Mr. Olalekan Onafeko, has appealed to the leadership of the Nigerian Labour Congress (NLC) and the Trade Union Congress (TUC) to call off their planned nationwide protests and strike in the interest of the masses.

Onafeko called on the labour unions to reconsider their stand as embarking on strike would further heighten the hardship experienced across the country.

The Clerk, who made the call on Monday at a training and capacity development programme organised by the National Assembly for its staff and labour leaders in Lagos, also bemoaned the effects of military administrations on legislative institutions in the country.

He, therefore, urged the leadership of the National Assembly not to relent in nurturing and developing the legislative workforce in order to ensure that Nigeria’s Legislature achieves the objectives for which it was established.

“Incessant truncation of democratic processes and institutions has left negative impacts on the development of the Legislature at the federal and state levels. Developing human resources becomes necessary, especially in the legislative arm of Government in Nigeria, being the only neglected or isolated democratic institution whenever elected governments were toppled by the military junta.

“While this happened, only the Executive and Judicial arms of Government were allowed to exist and, as such, enjoyed all privileges including training and development programmes for their staff,” he explained.

He used the opportunity to “appeal to the labour union leaders to shelve this avoidable strike and protests to enable constructive negotiations with the Federal Government progress to mutually acceptable conclusion.”

He said with such negotiation, citizens would not be made to go through the usual hardship occasioned by protests and industrial actions in the country, especially since the government and the labour unions are both working towards the betterment of the people.

While commending the National Assembly for its effort to enhance the human capacity development of its staff, Onafeko argued that “employees are the greatest assets of an organisation and investing in their training and development is key to sustaining success and growth of the institution.”

The training programme, he stated, is capable of enhancing communication between the Government and the labour unions while the participants gain ideas that could be employed for improved services.

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