IT Expert Urges NLC To Enforce MTN Employees Condition Of Service In S/Africa In Nigeria

An IT expert, Tunde Ezichi, has called on the Nigeria Labour Congress (NLC) to carry out an investigation of the condition of service of MTN’s employees in South Africa and insist on same in Nigeria.

Ezichi, who is the Chief Executive Officer of Sigma-Beta Aloha Ltd., an IT company made the call in Abuja on Thursday.

He made the call in a reaction to the picketing of MTN offices by NLC, which started on Monday in protest against non-unionisation of its workers.

“What NLC should do is to find out the condition of service in South Africa for instance, what do they give to their employees; is it the same contract employment?

“When all these multi-nationals come to this country, they want to go the easiest way by hiring cheap labour and not giving good working condition.

“They cannot be coming to Nigeria and making most of their money here and not wanting to employ people on full time basis.  It is wrong,“ he said

On non unionisation of MTN staff, Ezichi said workers should belong to unions because through the unions, they could fight for their rights.

He said if MTN staff were giving proper employment, there would be no need to prevent the workers from belonging to any union.

Also reacting, Adede Williams, the President Association of Telecommunications Professional of Nigeria (ATPN), called on NLC and MTN to dialogue on ways to settle the ongoing issue between the two bodies.

He said the association called on various stakeholders involved in the face off to dialogue on the issue to have a lasting solution to resolve the issue.

“We are appealing to NLC to have a roundtable discussion with MTN, an international organisation and as employer of labour, we don’t want a situation where MTN will have a face-off with its workers.

“We on our own part, we want them to dialogue by having a roundtable discussion and reach an agreement to settle the matter,’’ he said.

The NLC President, Mr Ayuba Wabba, told journalists during picketing of MTN Headquarters in Lagos that the organised labour would not tolerate deprivation or enslavement of the Nigerian worker.

Wabba said that MTN Nigeria refused to adhere to labour rules and allow its workers to belong to unions.

“There are a lot of anti-labour practices by the company, which include denying the workers freedom of association and the right to collective bargaining,’’ Wabba said.

However, MTN’s Corporate Relations Executive, Tobechukwu Okigbo, had issued a statement denying any wrong-doing by MTN on the issue.