…Marks 2022 Workers’ Day
The Nigerian Government has been tasked to ensure that Nigerian workers experience peace, understanding, collaboration, justice and fraternity in labour, which is the essence of the Workers’ Day celebration, as well as the vision of the founder of the Labour Day. Comrade Paul-Mary Williams Onofere, Acting National President, Young Christian Workers, YCW, Nigeria who gave the charge in his address, titled “Decent work; hope of secured future for young people”, during the 2022 Workers’ Day celebration stated that if the above variants/tangents are not fulfilled, then, the significance of the founder’s vision is worthless. Onofere described the Workers’ Day celebration as a spiritual gathering of young people in the quest and solidarity for better life.
He opined that in ensuring that the right and dignity of workers are attained, the Nigeria Labour Congress should regularly check and visit the National Assembly on reforms and bills that will elevate the Nigerian work force and standard of living of workers. He said: “The celebration is a spiritual gathering of young people in the quest and solidarity for better life and to support the Nigeria Labour Congress and Workers’ Unions, to encourage them to rise up to the various challenges, in ensuring that the right and dignity of workers are attained, respected with good living conditions, we call on the NLC to regularly check and visit the National Assembly on reforms and bills that will elevate the Nigerian work force and standard of living.”
While urging the young workers to ensure they speak truth to power and channel their energy to reality, Onofere encouraged them to join political parties of their choice and make the desirable difference. In her remarks, Mrs. Ijeoma Anyarbosi, President, YCW, Catholic Archdiocese of Lagos, lamented that Nigerians and workers in particular are suffering as a result of poor salary and welfare from their employers, as well as unconducive working environment. She urged Nigerian youths to take their destinies in their own hands by getting their Permanent Voter’s Card, adding that they (youths) should come out on election days to vote for capable aspirants that have what it takes to fix the nation.
On the Peace Walk, she said: “Trekking that long distance, which is a total deviation from the way the association had over the years observed Workers’ Day, is our way of telling the authorities in government that young workers are ready to partner them in a cordial and peaceful manner in order to bring lasting understanding and peace in the nation’s work force.” Very Rev. Fr. Augustine Nnaemeka, Dean Apapa Denary and representative of Most Rev. (Dr.) Alfred Adewale Martins, Catholic Archbishop of Lagos on the occasion, congratulated the Nigerian workers, as he urged them to enjoy every moment of the Workers’ Day celebration. He also charged the government on the need for regular reforms to make the nation’s workforce healthier, as well as improvement in the welfare of workers. Speaking on the occasion, Hon. Kalejaiye Adeboye, former Special Adviser on Rural Matters, Lagos State, noted that integrity starts from the home, as he submitted that the problem of leadership, corruption and insecurity in the country would be better addressed if parents were committed to bequeathing the virtue of integrity in their children.
Urging parents to prioritize the affairs of their children and devote more time to their upbringing, Adeboye advised them (parents) to stop the trend of leaving their wards at the mercy of teachers and house helps. The event which had at its theme, “Upholding integrity in the face of a challenging economy” kicked off with Mass at St. Joseph Catholic Church, Kirikiri Town. It also saw the young workers go on a peace trek from St. Joseph, Kirikiri to St. Mary, Ajegunle where the ceremony continued with march past, drama among other things that spiced up the event.