NURTW crisis: We won’t hesitate to defend our mandate — Baruwa, others

The President of National Union of Road Transport Workers (NURTW ), Alhaji Tajudeen Ibikunle Baruwa, said the union would not fold its hands and allow a group of thugs masquerading as Lagos Park Management Committee to steal the mandate given to them as President and National Officers by the members of the union on May 24, 2023 during Special Zonal Delegates Conference.

Baruwa stated this while addressing a press conference on the state of the union titled “Coup d’etat in the NURTW” on Monday in Abuja.

He called on the Inspector General of Police (IGP) Olukayode Egbetokun and Director General of Department of State Services(DSS), Yusuf Magaji Bichi to rein in the former President of the union, Alhaji Najeem Usman and former National Vice President, Alhaji Tajudeen Badru Agbede and their hired thugs to vacate the National Secretariat of the union which was illegally burgled and occupied since three weeks ago.

He said the leadership of the union has taken several steps to resolve the problems including lodging of formal complaints to the Nigerian Police, DSS, Federal Ministry of Labour, Employment and Productivity, Vice President office, National Security Adviser, Ministry of Defence and Nigeria Labour Congress (NLC) without any positive results. 

Baruwa said the former President of the union, Najeem Usman Yasin, has held illegal meetings with some handpicked past leaders of the union purported to be members of the National Board of Trustees in clear breach of Article 31 a-e of the union’s constitution.

According to Baruwa, “For the purpose of further clarification, the election of the present national officers of the union otherwise known as National Administrative Council  (NAC) members headed by me ( Alhaji Tajudeen Ibikunle Baruwa ) being rejected by the former National President Alhaji Najeem Usman Yasin and former National Vice President, Alh. Agbede and few others from Lagos State was held concurrently on the 24th May, 2023 during the last special zonal delegates conference held in six zonal councils of the union in line with Article 13, 14, 15 and 16 of the union constitution respectively. 

“Consequently, on 22nd August 2023 the 10th Quadrennial National Delegate  Conference of the Union was conveyed at Ta’aL Hotels Lafia Nasarawa State where the newly elected National Officers  ( 18  ) were formally inaugurated and sworn in.

“It will further interest you to know that the Najeem Usman Yasin has summoned a meeting of all the state councils of the union here in Abuja on 12th of September 2023 with a view to cajoling them to abandon the mandate duly given to me and my colleagues during the last special zonal delegates conference of the union held on 24th May 2023 and subsequent inauguration and swearing in on 22nd August 2023 at the last 10th Quadrennial National Delegate Conference.”

Baruwa added that Najeem was one of the beneficiaries of the same constitution; he was hell bent on violating by first and foremost aiding and abetting the installation of an illegal caretaker Committee under the leadership of Agbede against the constitution.

He added that any meeting by the board not properly constituted in line with Article 31 a-e of the constitution of the union is null and void and is of no effect.

He therefore reminded Najeem and his cohorts that are aggrieved with the process and outcome of results of election to follow due process of a democratic society anchored on rule of law and go to court adding that anything fall short of this would lead to anarchy.

He said only courts of competent jurisdiction can invalidate their mandate but not through self help by an individual or a group of individuals no matter how highly in the union.

“We shall henceforth not hesitate to defend our mandate with the last drop of our blood,” Baruwa added.



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