By Steve Agbota
A crisis of confidence has hit the Council of Maritime Transport Unions and Associations (COMTUA) following the constant breach of the provisions of the Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) entered into by members of COMTUA allegedly by some members especially the National Union of Road Transport Workers (NURTW).
Some of the key members of COMTUA, Maritime Workers’ Union of Nigeria (MWUN), Nigerian Association of Road transport (NARTO), Association of Maritime Truck Owners (AMATO) and Road Transport Employers Association of Nigeria (RTEAN), have consequently withdrawn their memberships of the body.
MWUN had, in a letter to the Managing Director of the Nigerian Ports Authority (NPA), dated March 10, 2022, signed by the Secretary General, Felix S. Akingboye, and obtained by our correspondent, adverted the attention of the NPA Managing Director to these significant developments in COMTUA.
“I am directed to inform you, Sir, that Maritime Workers’ Union of Nigeria (MWUN) has withdrawn from the Council of Maritime Transport Unions and Association (COMTUA),” the letter read. The union said: “We are constrained to take our exit from the Council due to the continuous breach of the provisions of the Council’s Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) by members especially the national Union of Roaf Transport Workers (NURTW).”
“While listing the primary objectives of the Council to include, among others, collaboration of all the Maritime Trade Unions and Associations to stem the incessant and unabated gridlock that has bedeviled the access roads to the nation’s sea ports over the years, speak with one voice on issue concerning members, and synergize with one another to foster solidarity, the Union lamented that the NURTW had constantly breached this well-stated understanding” the union added.
The Union specifically pointed the finger at the NURTW for writing frivolous petitions against its (MWUN’s) members and other stakeholders, that is government agencies, which led to arrest by the police and the resultant embarrassment caused to the union.
MWUN also said that the NURTW peddled falsehood against its (MWUN’s) members and other stakeholders.
The Union (MWUN) stated that as a focused and responsible union, it could not remain a party to an organisation that “professes one thing and does another.”
“Consequently, Maritime Workers Union of Nigerian (MWUN) cease to be party to any action or discussion of the Council effective from the date of our letter of withdrawal from the Council, copy of which attached for your perusal.