By Tosin Kolade
The Trade Union Congress (TUC) has elected Mr Quadri Olaleye as its new National President to replace Mr Bobboi Kaigama.
Kaigama served for two terms from 2013 to 2019.
By its constitution, Olaleye will head a 14-member National Administrative Council (NAC) of the union, elected to pilot the affairs of the Labour Centre for the next three years.
Olaleye of the Food, Beverage and Tobacco Senior Staff Association (FOBTOB), emerged after a consensus was reached at the end of the 11th Triennial Delegates Conference in Abuja.
The former PENGASSAN President, Olabode Johnson was expected to emerge president General of the TUC, but his sudden demise on May 31 at the Abuja National Hospital quashed the hope.
In his acceptance remarks, Olaleye expressed joy at the opportunity given to him, noting that position was first in the history of his association.
“This is the first time my association would clinch the position of the President of the Congress, in more than four decades of its existence.
“I am grateful for the trust you have bestowed on me by being mindful of my sacrifices and that of predecessors in the struggle for a better Trade Union Congress of Nigeria.
“Fellow Comrades, this opportunity came as a surprise to me after we have conceded for peace to reign. Indeed, it is God ordained! What we are witnessing today is more than just a change of baton; it is also a call to service.
“Trade Union Congress of Nigeria, by this election, has just fulfilled the aspirations of the founding fathers of my great union -FOBTOB and has also chosen to reaffirm the confidence we have in the current leadership of this great Congress.”
He sought the co-operation of workers and Nigerians to achieve a country everyone would be proud of.
While promising to speak the truth to government at all levels, he sought for cooperation and contribution of everyone to build a Labour movement for posterity.
He assured the union that he would dedicate himself to ensure that the challenges workers face are confronted headlong.
The new president paid glowing tribute to late Johnson, pledging that his struggle would not be in vein.
Others executives elected include; Innocent Bola Audu of Association of Civil Servants of Nigeria, ASCSN, as 1st Deputy President, Oyinkan Olasanoye of Association of Senior Staff of Banks, Insurance and Financial Institutions (ASSBIFI) as 2nd Deputy President; Hygenius Chika Onuegbu of Petroleum and Gas Senior Staff Association of Nigeria, PENGASSAN, as 3rd Deputy President.
Others are; Muhammed Yunusa of Senior Staff Association of Statutory Corporations, Government Owned Companies (SSASSCGOC) as National Treasurer; Isaac Egbugara of Construction and Civil Engineering Senior Staff Association, CCESSA, as Financial Secretary, among others.