NLC Protests Disrupt Labour Party Meeting, Obi Seeks Reconciliation

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The Labour Party presidential candidate, Peter Obi, appealed for calm following Tuesday’s invasion of the party headquarters by members of the National Transition Committee set to take over the Nigeria Labour Congress.

 

The committee headed by a former President of the NLC, Abdulwaheed Omar, was put in place by the NLC Political Commission to reposition the Labour Party two months after the congress voided the re-election of LP National Chairman, Julius Abure, and members of the National Working Committee.

 

Other members are Prof. Sam Amadi and Abiodun Olamosu, who were appointed co-chairmen while Nnawuihe Nwauwa would serve as the Secretary of the committee.

 

Among other things, the new caretaker committee was expected to set up 13 sub-committees to oversee the administration of the Labour Party

 

On Tuesday, Omar and the committee members, accompanied by scores of NLC supporters, stormed the headquarters of the Labour Party in Abuja demanding Abure’s resignation.

 

The protest and threats to bring down the gates of the secretariat disrupted an ongoing meeting of the NWC and the party’s presidential candidate.

 

The shooting of tear gas canisters by the security operatives mounted at the entrance of the secretariat, however, prevented the demonstrators from forcing their way into the premises.

 

Addressing the protesters after the tension was doused, Obi played down the party’s internal crisis, saying they were all working from a united front.

 

The former Anambra governor explained that he arrived early at the headquarters to initiate a peace and reconciliation process that would involve bringing together the party’s factions.

 

He said, “Before we learnt that you people were outside, I already told them (NWC) that my first three assignments are reconciliation, reconciliation and reconciliation. It is what I do every day, even in our families. When we quarrel with our wives and children, we reconcile. Even today during the meeting, I made one instance, which is that I have come to start reconciling the family.

 

“So these people here (pointing at the demonstrators) are members of the family, who we must reconcile with. We will sit around a table and decide the future of our party. I am ready for a reconciliation meeting any day you choose, Mr. Chairman. I like what happened here today. It means we have just started the reconciliation process and what we achieved today was so much.”

 

Obi also spoke on the reconciliation of Abure and the Lamidi Apapa faction reported by PUNCH online, stressing that the two camps came together for the greater good of the party.

 

“Let me tell you one thing, their reconciliation is all about our party and I can assure you that everyone must reconcile with each other. When we come together, we will make decisions as a family.

 

“The party has a constitution and a National Executive Council, and everyone, including myself and Governor Otti, will be there to decide,” he stated.

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