NLC pickets YEDC Yola

The Organized Labour in Adamawa State in conjunction with the National Union of Electricity Employees (NUEE) had picketed Yola Electricity Distribution Company, (YEDC) over alleged illegal disengagement of staff.

The company was in the news recently following virulent protests by end users of electricity over what they described as crazy and unilateral billing by the new company.

The development is coming less than a month after Quest Electricity Nigeria Limited took over YEDC from the Federal Government.

YEDC was handed over to Quest Nigeria limited on Dec. 31, 2021.

Addressing the union members at the main entrance gate YEDC on Tuesday in Yola, Comrade Emanuel Fashe, chairman, Adamawa chapter of NLC said, the organized labour picketed the company in solidarity to the members of NUEE.

“We are here to tell the management of YEDC that what they did is illegal and it would not go down well with the Nigeria Labour Congress.

” As labour Union, we say no to illegal sack of the staff, because, we have never experienced such attitude where the management of the company and the union are still negotiating and at the same time staff were served with sack letters.

“No any agreement was signed with the workers to warrant sacking of any staff,” Fashe said.

He said that the union was not only giving solidarity to members of NUEE in the spirit of comradeship saying an injury to one, is an injury to all.

According to the chairman, the primary objective of any company as part of social responsibility was to give employment to immediate community , adding that what happened in YEDC was completely opposite.

“We say no to this use of arbitrary power by YEDC and we are in support of Electricity workers.

“We say no to economic slavery of Nigerian people, we are advising the company to go back to the status quo for negotiation with the workers to amicably resolve the issue,” Fashe appealed.

He expressed worry over the sharp increase of electricity tarrif by over 100 percent by the new company saying “such had not been done any where in the country.”

In his address, Comrade Muhammed Musa, National Deputy Chairman of NUEE Northern chapter, said what actually happened to YEDC staff was extension of slavery.

Musa said that the union would never allow such wickedness to happen to Nigerians.

” You cannot just sack over 700 staff out of 900 and expect us to keep quite and until they reach our demands, we will not allow them to enter the company.

“At the same time, our doors are open for dialogue as much as they show remorse, but if they refused and continue with their slavery agenda, we are going to make it national issue,” Musa said.

Also speaking, Comrade Ali Meshelinga of National Union of Electricity Employees and Allied Matters (NUEEAM) Yola office said, that YEDC was covering Yola, Jalingo, Damaturu and Borno States.

Meshelinga said that the union wrote a letter to the new management demanding them suspend their move of sacking the staff.

“In the letter we gave the management ultimatum of two weeks from Jan. 6 to Jan. 20, 2021 to revert their action and they did not response to our letter.

” In the letter, we appealed to them to revert their actions and reconvene a meeting between the union and the management,” Meshelinga said.

He warned that if they continue to refuse to listen to them, the union has no option rather to continue to shutdown the company.

When contacted, Mr. Kingsley Nkemneme, Principal Manager Corporate Communications YEDC said that the top management of the company were currently holding a meeting with the Union and NLC over the matter.

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