The authority of the Federal Capital Territory has withdrawn permission given to the organised labour to use Eagle Square in Abuja for their May Day celebration.
The withdrawal came barely three days to the celebration of International Workers’ Day on May 1.
Disclosing this to journalists in Abuja on Friday, the General Secretary of the Nigeria Labour Congress, Comrade Emmanuel Ugboaja, said the withdrawal was contained in a letter sent to the labour centre on Thursday by the FCT minister through his administration’s agency.
According to him, the minister explained in the letter that the reasons for the withdrawal borders on preparations at Eagle Square ahead of the May 29 inauguration of the President-elect, Bola Tinubu.
However, Ugboaja said, the withdrawal has no implication on workers, they should brace up for a war cry on May Day.
He said, “They have withdrawn the permission and they don’t want to talk to us, the Minister of FCT has withdrawn our permission to use Eagle Square for the Mayday and clearly he is speaking for his government, it means the government does not want to address the workers, so they do not appreciate the work the workers have put over the years and we will not fail to appreciate ourselves.
“The withdrawal has no implication on workers. The Mayday will hold but not in Eagle Square. The workers will mark their day from the NLC to every nook and cranny of Nigeria.”
“The reason they gave was that they were renovating the Eagle Square for usage on May 29 and we will find it to be ultra lame. This is not the first time there will be an inauguration. We have had more than five to seven inaugurations in the past two decades and we have always held Mayday in the Eagle Square.
“The minister of FCT, through his agency, sent us a letter yesterday, It’s Workers’ Day and we have sought permission to use a venue and it was granted to us and later withdrawn, so it has nothing to do with the minister of Labour. If the withdrawal of our permission to use Eagle Square is a snippet of what they (workers) should expect, we are ready the way we have adjusted to it will prove to them that we are ready for whatever they are going to throw at us.”
On May Day, he said, “Workers should be prepared for the worst, the vindicators do not point towards any rosy future if we do not struggle. So it is going to be a war cry on May 1st, just for us to brace up to take the challenges we see coming forward”.
Efforts to reach the Director of Information and Communication of the FCT, Mr. Muhammad Sule, proved abortive, as the Director did not answer his calls.
The Special Adviser on Media to the FCT minister, Abubakar Sani, also declined calls from our correspondent for comments on the issue.