The Nigeria Labour Congress (NLC) has called on the Federal Government to intervene in the Kogi State House of Assembly Crisis.
The call was made in a statement issued by the NLC National Leadership signed by the President Ayuba Wabba.
“We are appalled by the developments in the Kogi State House of Assembly in particular, and Kogi State in general.
“For those who may not have been in the know, last week, the speaker, Honourable Alfa Imam was forced out and a more pliant one installed.
“The offence of the former Speaker was that he had initiated a legislative process to look into the disbursements of the Paris Club refund following non-payment of salaries and pensions and the industrial tensions in its aftermath.
“But the former Speaker was lucky to have gotten off “lightly” as the House Member who moved the motion for this process ended up in Plaster of Paris (POP) courtesy of the thugs dispatched to disrupt the House proceedings.” The statement said.
The statement described the Kogi crisis as a mess that represents the height of intolerance, insensitivity and impunity, and a precursor to dictatorship and anarchy.
The NLC called on all well-meaning Nigerians to condemn the act and that the situation should be apprehended by the Federal Government before it spins out of control.
The statement said: “Accordingly, we call on the Federal Government to, as a matter of urgency, commence investigations into the disbursements of bail-out funds (50% percent of which it had directed should be applied to payment of salaries, pensions and gratuities); continuous non-payment of salaries and pensions; endless staff audit which has become a convenient alibi for owing salaries and pensions.
“We also believe that the Federal Government should be concerned that the state-contrived industrial disharmony in the state is slowly but steadily degenerating into a political crisis as exemplified by the clamp down on ASUU and the State-sponsored violence in the House of Assembly and other acts of witch-hunt in the State’s socio-political space.”
“The Kogi State situation has dragged on for too long and the Federal Government cannot continue to look the other way. The time to act is now.
“Finally, we are guided by the dictum that it is better to build strong institutions instead of strong individuals, because whereas strong institutions protect our democracy, strong individuals threaten it.” The NLC Added.