The Minister of Labour, Chris Ngige, has threatened to sanction trade unions; those that fail to submit details of their yearly audited accounts to the Ministry of Labour and Employment.
Ngige made this assertion in a speech at the fourth Quadrennial National Delegates Conference of the Hotel and Personal Services Senior Staff Association (HAPSSSA).
He said that some unions had not submitted the reports in the past 10 years.
“The situation is disheartening; no fewer than 50 per cent of registered trade unions have failed to submit their audited accounts in the past 10 years,” Ngige explained.
According to him, such conduct negates the Trade Union Act that stipulated a stringent annual submission of audited accounts for unions.
“Most union members’ dues are normally deducted at source as check-off dues; the law stipulates the practice to institute transparency in unions.
“The inability of the leadership of some unions to hold their conventions promptly is a major cause of the internal crisis in the unions,” he said.
Ngige commended the efforts of HAPSSSA toward keeping its account clean. He also urged the incoming executives to follow the path of transparency; and rules of engagement in trade unionism.
In his speech, Dr Ademola Adeyemi, the President of HAPSSSA, called on the Federal Government to tackle security challenge in the country to encourage more investments in the hospitality and tourism industry.
He lamented that insecurity in some parts of the country had negatively affected the industry.
According to him, there is the need for tiers of government to double their efforts to stem the tide so as to encourage the tourism sector to contribute its quota to the country’s Gross Domestic Product.
“We have insecurity at various levels; we are faced with man-made disasters rather than natural disasters.
“Nigeria must strive to end the spate of kidnapping, banditry, and armed robbery; as well as herdsmen invasion, political killings and ritual killings. The Federal Government must double its efforts,” he stated.
Adeyemi said that the conference would be dedicated to seeking lasting solutions to the challenge of insecurity in the country.
The President also called on hotel managements to promote labour-friendly laws; noting that employers ought to see labour unions as partners in progress.
“To those that are otherwise, we want you to have a change of mind; and see labour unions as social partners. You should avoid obnoxious policies and sharp practices; because we will not hesitate to engage in legal actions where necessary,” he said.
While commending the Federal Government for the progress made; especially in making the minimum wage law a national issue, he urged other tiers of government to make efforts to allow Nigerian workers enjoy the benefit of the new wage.