CSOs launch transformative governance campaign

Labour and Pro-Labour civil society organizations across the country have launched campaign for transformative governance.

The Coalition made this known in a statement delivered by comrade Jaye Gaskia of Praxis Centre in Abuja on Monday, adding that the campaign is being established in response to bad governance in the country.

The initiative is a joint labour and civil society advocacy and campaign programme to influence radical change in government policies, processes, and institutions at all levels towards achieving transformative governance that delivers on public services, and provision of basic needs of citizens.

The groups included the Trade Union Congress, TUC; the Amalgamated Union of Public Corporations Civil Service Technical and Recreational Services Employees, AUPCTRE, and the Federation of Informal Workers of Nigeria, FIWON, among others.

Civil society organisations that are also part of the initiative include Corporate Accountability and Public Participation Africa, CAPPA, and the Environmental Rights Action, ERA, among others.

Giving the background on why the initiative is necessary, the groups said that the Nigerian government at all levels has failed to meet the socio-economic and welfare needs of Nigerians because of the lack of political willpower and commitment.

They said that the economic, social and security outlook in the country gets worse by the day with the state becoming more repressive and intolerant of the views that challenge or criticise the actions or inactions of the government.

They also frowned at the ranking of Nigeria, despite its enormous and vast resources, among the poorest countries in the world.

General Secretary of FIWON, Gbenga Komolafe said that Nigerian citizens are in search of a transformation that will make the nations’ institutions work for everybody.

He said that Nigeria is confronted with several challenges, the biggest of which is insecurity, which he blamed on the Nigerian government.

He insisted that the government is culpable for all the crimes going on in the country because governors and lawmakers have been accused and linked to arming thugs to terrorise people to win elections and then find it hard to retrieve the arms after elections.

“What Nigeria and Nigerians are experiencing now are a direct result of all these.

“The solutions, however, are an active citizenry that is aware of its citizenship and readiness to confront these evils headlong,” Komolafe.

Comrade Gaskia also stressed the importance of a robust and civic space, where the fundamental human right is guaranteed. This position is premised on the direct correlation between the civic space and the ability to hold government accountable.

“Official Government Statistics don’t paint a good picture. Comrade Jaye Gaskia of Praxis Center, a Co-Convener of the Campaign, stated that the Campaign has been established to reverse the negative trend and downward spiral.

“The Three thematic areas for the Campaign are as follows; Ensuring accessible and effective public service delivery; Enabling political education of Citizens for transformative Governance; and Promoting and Enhancing Human Security as a panacea to the endemic insecurity in the Country and ravaging poverty and devastating conditions of the people.

“From the Independence struggles till date the Labour Movement comprising Labour and pro-Labour Civil Society Organisations has been pivotal to the struggles for human development and freedoms. In view of this position, the Campaign would work towards strengthening the relationship with all stakeholders in the Labour Movement,” Gaskia said

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