The House of Representatives, on Wednesday, came hard on the Nigeria Labour Congress (NLC) for claiming that lawmakers allegedly got N100 million each as palliative from the federal government.
The NLC Assistant General Secretary, Christopher Onyeka, reportedly said the executive arm of government had given N100 million to each member of the National Assembly as palliatives.
But, the House in a statement by its spokesperson, Hon. Akin Rotimi, said the NLC claim was baseless and devoid of any factual accuracy.
The statement said: “Transparency and truth in public discourse are necessary for a functioning democracy. While we doubt that Mr. Onyeka was actually conveying the official position of the NLC on this claim, it is nonetheless important to correct such misinformation.
“First, we state categorically that Mr. Onyeka lied in his claim that National Assembly members were given N100m as palliatives. For the avoidance of doubt, at no time did Members of the House of Representatives receive any money from the Executive arm as palliatives. We, therefore, consider this statement as malicious, irresponsible and in bad faith.
“We consider it irresponsible and most unfortunate that Mr. Onyeka would misrepresent facts in a bid to lend credence to otherwise valid demands of the NLC, while seeking to denigrate the National Assembly, and inciting the public against the institution.
“Accordingly, the House of Representatives demands an immediate retraction of this lie and a public apology from the Nigeria Labour Congress. The NLC as a critical stakeholder in the development of Nigeria has a voice and it risks delegitimising that voice if it is found to include fables in its legitimate agitations.
“Second, we wish to remind the NLC and indeed all Nigerians that in less than 100 days in the tenure of the 10th Assembly, we have demonstrated our commitment to the welfare of Nigerian workers and all Nigerians.
“We wish to invite the NLC to see the National Assembly as partners rather than adversaries. The 10th Assembly of the House of Representatives wishes to reassure Nigerians that we remain committed to advancing the wellbeing of our constituents.
“We empathise with all Nigerians on account of the pains being experienced due to the impact of the removal of the fuel subsidy, and will continue to compel the Executive to expedite measures to alleviate the pains of Nigerians at this time, and more importantly work with all stakeholders to rebuild our country to ensure no Nigerian is left behind.”