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COMTUA President Lied, We Don’t Operate Illegal Tolling Points, Says Maritime Workers Union

MWUN pointed out that it is a partner in growing Nigeria's economy, ensuring peace in all ports, terminals, jetties and oil and gas platforms which informs its unblemished decade long record of maintaining industrial peace in the Maritime sector.

The Maritime Workers Union of Nigeria (MWUN) has refuted the claims of extortion, vandalism and harassment levelled against it by the Council Of Maritime Transport Unions and Associations (COMTUA).

The MWUN in a rebuttal signed by its Secretary General, Com. Felix Akingboye, titled, ‘TOO MANY LIES OF Prince Adeyinka Aroyemun’ denied involvement in any of such activity, stating that they are outside its jurisdictional scope and membership composition.

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MWUN pointed out that it is a partner in growing Nigeria’s economy, ensuring peace in all ports, terminals, jetties and oil and gas platforms which informs its unblemished decade long record of maintaining industrial peace in the Maritime sector.

The Maritime Workers Union further asked the public to ignore COMTUA’s allegations, describing them as lies concorted to tarnish and rubbish the well laid foundation of MWUN.

The statement read in part: “The attention of Maritime Workers Union of Nigeria has been drawn to a press release making the rounds released by an online medium “TodaysNews” archored by one Jerry Aguigbo published January 16″ 2023: targeting the personage of the President General and other union officials while alleging MWUN involvement in activities outside its jurisdictional scope and membership composition.

“Ordinarily MWUN will not join issues with COMTUA, however, we are compelled by the manipulative and malicious lies put forth into public space by a clearly disgruntled and disoriented Prince Adeyinka Aroyemun to issue this rebuttal. We wish to point out that MWUN and other reputable unions and association were founding members of COMTUA but had to withdraw their membership because continually a faction of COMTUA led by Prince Adeyinka Aroyemun breached COMTUA Memorandum of Understanding and resorted to blackmail and threats to members, security agents and government alike.

“He even went to the extent of writing frivolous petitions against COMTUA members while inciting in fighting. We are not therefore, surprised that Prince Adeyinka Aroyemun has once again resorted to his gutter tactics of wantonly peddling falsehood as his means of getting back at MWUN for withdrawing its membership from COMTUA.

“Short of libellous, Prince Adeyinka Aroyemun assertion that MWUN tolls 20 checkpoints from coconut Bus stop to Tin can island gate a distance of about 1000 meters is a figment of his myopic imagination and a deliberate lie designed to malign our good image. Too many lies of Adeyinka Aroyemun.

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“Com. (Prince) Dr. Adeyanju Adewale, President General, MWUN has over the years built a reputation based on probity and proper public service, he has contributed in no small measure to the growth, sustenance and development of the maritime sector. This can be attested to by the many myriads of accolades conferred on him by both government and other relevant stakeholders in the maritime industry: so, to drag his name into this frill is wicked and unfortunate.

“For the sake of clarity, MWUN confines its activities to areas clearly within its jurisdictional scope one of which is haulage, ably superintended by one of our highly trained and respected union official – Com. Taofeek Shorinola.

“Our well-trained members will and have not in any circumstance gone against the law as they ply their trade within the exclusive economic zone of the ports and cannot be found on the roads outside the port vicinity. This again is one of the many lies of Prince Adeyinka Aroyemun, concorted to tarnish and rubbish the well laid foundation of MWUN and should therefore be ignored”.

COMTUA, in a statement by its National President, Prince Adeyinka Aroyewun on Monday, had accused MWUN of having 20 illegal tolling points from Coconut to Tincan Port Second Gate, where N2,000 is forcefully collected per point from its members, and called for the intervention of government and relevant agencies.

According to the association, letters of complaint and consultation to the Maritime Workers’ Union on the activities of their members fell on deaf ears as non yielded results.

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COMTUA had in a media report alleged that Maritime Workers Union (MWUN) have 20 points from Coconut to Tincan Port Second gate where NGN2,000 is forcefully collected per point from its members.

Olamide Osho

Olamide Osho is a journalist covering the maritime, aviation and crime beats with special interest in sports and public relations. He is also a songwriter and a football fan passionate about Arsenal FC. You can contact him via Olamideosho@journalng.com.

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