President Goodluck Jonathan yesterday led the list of prominent Nigerians who sent their condolences to the family of late former president of the Nigeria Labour Congress (NLC), Comrade Paschal Bafyau who died yesterday at the age of 65.
Senate President, Dr. David Mark; Enugu State governor, Mr Sullivan Chime; the current president of NLC, Comrade Omar Abdulwaheed and his Trade Union Congress (TUC) counterpart, Comrade Peter Esele as well as the National Union of Textile Workers also expressed their condolences in a release made available to LEADERSHIP.
Jonathan, who noted that he received the news of Bafyau’s death with shock, described the former labour leader as “an unassuming man,” who was passionate about labour issues and the interest of workers.
In a statement by the president’s special adviser on media and publicity, Dr. Reuben Abati, the president said, “Bafyau displayed level-headedness, pragmatism and a good sense of reason while negotiating with government officials over the welfare of Nigerian workers.”
Jonathan also extolled Bafyau’s stint in politics at both national and state levels and his contributions to the sustenance of enduring democracy, adding that the Adamawa chapter of the Peoples’ Democratic Party (PDP) in particular and the party at the national level, will miss Bafyau’s moderating influence and grassroots mobilisation capacity.
Senator Mark, in a condolence message to the family, government and people of Adamawa State, said late Bafyau till death was a patriotic and selfless Nigerian, adding that his non-violent labour campaign endeared him to many Nigerians.
He recalled that late Bafyau as the then president of NLC struggled for the emancipation of the workers and by extension, the welfare of the Nigerian people.
Edo State Governor, Comrade Adams Oshiomhole described the death of Bafyau as “a singular colossal loss to the labour movement.”
In a condolence letter to Omar, Oshiomhole who succeeded Bafyau at the Congress, stated: “Comrade Pascal, ahead of his contemporaries, appreciated the limitation of ‘bread and butter’ struggle of trade unionism.
“He was convinced that organised working men and women must be politically relevant through party formation and contest for political power if they will truly overcome exploitation and ensure equitable distribution of state resources.”