MWUN: Nigerian Dockworkers Now Earn Money According to International Standard—Com Adeyanju

…As Adeyanju Gives Stewardship in Office for 1st Term, Gets Elected for 2nd Term

By DAPO OLAWUNI

The President General of Maritime Workers Union of Nigeria (MWUN) Comrade Adewale Adeyanju has said that the condition of service of Nigerian dockworkers today can be compared to any of their counterparts around the world.

Comrade Adeyanju stated this in Lagos on Friday during the union’s delegates conference where he was re-elected for a second term following a unanimous decision by members of the union.

While giving stewardship of his first four years tenure in office, he said the union pursued vigorously the Collective Bargaining Agreement (CBA) negotiations for the enhancement of workers benefit across the four branches of the union namely; NPA, Dockworkers, Shipping and seamen branches respectively.

According to him, the recent National Joint Industrial Council (NJIC) agreement on minimum standard for the Nigerian docklabour was midwife by the Nigerian Maritime Administration and Safety Agency (NIMASA) and this was signed by all parties concerned including the employers of Labour on Thursday 18th of March 2021.

Adeyanju in a group photograph with dignitaries at the conference

“This CBA I am proud to say has lifted the standard of dockworkers to international standard” he stated

The MWUN PG called on NIMASA to expedite action in the issuance of biometric identity cards to Nigerian dockworkers so as to enable proper means of identifying registered dock labour at the nation’s ports.

Com Adeyanju lamented the outsourcing of jobs by terminal operators to foreign nationals. Recall that the union is presently battling one of the port concessionaire, APM Terminals Apapa for outsourcing security jobs in the terminal to a South African company.

The union has since issued a 7-days ultimatum to APM Terminals to withdraw this anti-people policy.

Comrade Adeyanju stated that “The issue of outsourcing of jobs that are creditably performed by Nigerians to foreigners is become endemic in the Maritime sector. A case in point being the recent outsourcing of its security functions by a certain maritime company to foreign nationals who have no stake in the Nigeria project except for profit and
capital flight”

“The foregoing situation will undoubtedly send hundreds of Nigerian workers into the unemployment market while creating employment for foreign nationals. This has to stop forthwith as it is at variance with the Nigeria Labour law” he warned

He also lamented that more expatriates are employed more than
the Nigerian indigene to perform same job with salary disparity in favour of the expatriate, he said this is totally unacceptable.

Adeyanju and other members of the executives were given another mandate, which will last for another four years unopposed.

He promised to consolidate on the achievements recorded by the union under his leadership in the past four years. He listed some of the achievements by the union to include improvement in workers welfare, sustenance of peace in the port, stoppage of the Ports & Harbours bill, payment of severance package to tally clerks and onboard security men among others.

In her remarks, Chairperson of Seaport Terminal Operators Association of Nigeria (STOAN) Princess Vicki Haastrup, commended Adeyanju for sustaining the peace and industrial harmony in the port, saying that dockworkers in Nigerian ports are now reformed and no longer what they used to be.

She assured that seaport terminal operators under her leadership will always see to the welfare of dockworkers.

She said, “I am not surprised that you are returning unopposed because under your leadership, we have enjoyed peaceful coexistence between employer and the workers. The Nigerian dockworkers are reformed and it is because of the leadership. They are no longer violent. It is a thing of joy for me to be called mama dockworker. The Nigerian ports have really evolved.

“The work of dockworkers is very key to port operations. If you don’t have good dockworkers, you cannot have good ports. They are the bedrock of our operation. So for STOAN, we appreciate you because if you down tool, the entire operation of seaports nationwide will come to a standstill. We want to ensure that our dockworkers are well taken care of. There must be good working conditions for all dock workers in Nigeria.”

The Director General, Nigerian Maritime Administration and Safety Agency (NIMASA) who was represented by the Executive Director, Maritime Labour and Cabotage, Victor Ochei, expressed the agency’s commitment towards the training and retraining of dockworkers to acquire the relevant certifications which will enable them compete favourably with their foreign counterparts.

Also speaking at the conference, the President of Nigeria Labour Congress (NLC), Ayuba Wabba, said the congress remains committed to the welfare of Nigerian workers noting that the move by the Federal government to remove the national minimum wage from the exclusive legislative list to the concurrent legislative list will be resisted.

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