The Irresponsible JOHESU Strike
Strike by unions in Nigeria has become the norm rather than the exception. When labour unions wake up on the wrong side of the bed, they declare strike and in most cases, blackmail government into signing agreements, which both parties know, is impossible to implement.
The latest strike by the Joint Union of Health Workers is the most irresponsible strike I have seen in recent times. Strikes by health workers usually have dire consequences as in most cases, people will lose their lives but the health workers don’t care, all they are interested in is arm twisting government into signing agreements which would be the basis of their next strike.
The health workers are seeking pay parity with medical doctors, which we all know is impossible. Come to think of it, the health workers are more than the medical doctors and if their salaries were increased, it would lead to a bloated budget, which some states government cannot pay.
The Nigeria Medical Association (NMA), is also threatening to go on strike if the government accedes to JOHESU’s demand. The irony in the whole thing is that the Health minister, minister of state, Health and Labour minister are all doctors, so their demands are dead on arrival.
The danger right now is the outbreak of Ebola in Congo, which has claimed 17 lives. The federal executive council has ordered for screening at the airport and land borders. But the health workers are the ones to carry out the screening at both the airports and land borders and we may be facing an epidemic if Ebola finds its way into the country because of the strike by JOHESU. Government may listen to their demands later on but the damage of losing lives can never be reversed.
Oshiomhole’s Bid For APC Chairmanship
It is no longer a secret that former Edo State governor, Adams Oshiomhole is the anointed candidate of the presidency for the chairmanship position of the All Progressives Congress. As the party prepares for election, I think it is time they rejigged the party and a change of strategy is needed for the election.
No doubt, Chief John Oyegun has done his bit to steer the ship of the party in four years but without mincing words, I think Oyegun should step aside. In recent weeks, he has failed abysmally in providing leadership and direction for the party.
The APC is having a major crisis in at least 15 states and the Oyegun- led leadership has not resolved any crisis in any of the states.
Apart from the crises in the states, he also lost control of the National Assembly and we now have the most hostile legislature in recent times and the irony of it is that most of the lawmakers opposed to government’s policies and actions are APC lawmakers. To add insult to injury, the leadership of the Senate, controlled by the APC, is suspending APC lawmakers. This is the first time in the history of the country, that the APC is both the ruling party and the opposition in the Senate.
The executive had submitted the budget to the National Assembly for more than six months and we expected a quick passage since the legislature is dominated by APC members. You would expect them to be in tune with party goals and policies but the budget had gathered dust in the National Assembly thanks to bad and selfish politics and I have not seen the Oyegun – led leadership summoning party members in the legislature and executive to resolve the budget impasse or any other rift between the two arms of government.
Maybe Oyegun has had his challenges but his timid approach to leadership is not helping the party.
The APC needs a breath of fresh air, someone to up the ante and in this particular moment in time, Oshiomhole fits the bill.
Kaduna Local Government Elections
The Kaduna State local government elections have come and gone and as usual, the losers have started crying foul. Have you ever wondered why when political patties win an election, it is called free and fair and when they lose, it is because they were rigged out?
Before the election, many political analysts and social media commentators, have written the obituary of APC in Kaduna due to the high handedness of Governor Nasir El- Rufai in the state. But the party swept most of the seats which led credence to the fact that you don’t take things you read on social media serious.
While I am not a fan of Governor El- Rufai, I must commend him for using electronic voting in the election. To me, that’s forward thinking and should be emulated by all the governors. While electronic voting may not completely eliminate rigging, but to an extent, the voting will reflect the wishes of the electorate. Kudos to El- Rufai for treading where the federal government is taking baby steps.
Also in the results so far, PDP won three local government elections, which is a rarity in recent times. For that, I must also commend the state government. In other states where local government elections have been conducted, it’s usually a clean sweep for the ruling party in the state which brings to the fore the arguments for the scrapping of state electoral commission.
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