The two factions in the Nigeria Labour Congress (NLC) on Wednesday met publicly for the first time after a controversial election that tore the union apart early March this year.
Comrade Joe Ajaero had kicked against the outcome of the election after fellow contestant for the post of president of NLC Comrade Ayuba Wabba emerged successful at the event which held at the Eagle Square Abuja.
Some unions which also denounced the process teemed with Ajaero of the National Union of Electricity Employees to conduct fresh elections in Lagos, where he emerged factional president of the NLC, thereby effectively polarising the congress.
Previous moves including the setting up of a reconciliatory committee failed to bring the feuding parties together but Ajaero and Wabba agreed at yesterday’s meeting headed by Governor Adams Oshiomhole of Edo State and veterans of the labour movement to work for peace.
Oshiomhole, who addressed the press at the Transcorp Hilton Hotel, venue of the meeting said a seven-man committee to be headed by pioneer NLC President Comrade Hassan Sunmonu has been set up to resolve the impasse.
He said “a couple of things definitely went wrong; there is no question. We identified a lot of things and we agreed that the way forward is to put a solid movement.
That all these issues have to be addressed one after the other and we have to have an all-inclusive congress in which all shades of opinions are involved in decision making.
“We agree to have three members from each of side the divide if you like to be chaired by our founding president Comrade Hassan and to ensure that he guides them through so that whatever they do they are guided by the core values of organised labour,” he said.
He added that: “Those rich traditions and ethical issues must be observed and we must ensure that the morality of the labour movement is always reflected because organised labour is always ruled by sentiments about justice, fair play and what is proper more than any other thing.
“I think everybody agreed that we must find a way to get on with the job. We are now going to see everybody working together in dealing with all the issues that are on the table and other issues that might be raised in the very near future.”