Railway Workers Uncomfortable With Concession Plans
It is no longer news that the federal government is planning to hand over some assets of the Nigeria Railway Corporation to American multinational, General Electric.
What is newsy is that the workers in the corporation are quite uncomfortable with the plans, not only because of the history of failures in attempts to privatise public enterprises but for the future of their jobs.
“We have not been fortunate enough to get privatisation or concession really right in this country probably because of our policy inconsistency, lack of political will coupled with the hasty way railway concession is being pursued.
“We feel that caution should be taken. We wonder why all the inventories on the entire assets of the Nigerian Railway should be handed over to a preferred concessionaire whose document of expression of interest predates the newspaper advert for the bidding,” the group said in a statement on Wednesday.
The President of the Nigeria Union of Railway Workers, Saidu Garba, alleged that the concession process did not include plans to engage the workers on how to solve all evolving labour issues. He notes that without the workers’ engagement, the planned concession would be a failure.
The NUR president said the workers were not opposed to the concession but urged the government to adopt transparency, due diligence and best global practices during the process.