There is a twist in the police brutalization of the Nigeria Labour Congress, NLC president, Joe Ajaero, reports page3news.cim.ng
The Police Command in Imo says its officers did not arrest Joe Ajaero, president of the Nigeria Labour Congress (NLC), in Owerri, the state capital.
Earlier on Wednesday, Benson Upah, media head of the NLC, said Ajaero was picked up from the Imo council secretariat of the NLC by heavily armed police officers.
In a subsequent reports available to page3news.com.ng, Comrade Joe Ajaero was reported to have been admitted to the hospital after he was beaten up by security men during a rally in Owerri, Imo State by organised labour.
NLC’s chief of communication and publicity, Comrade Benson Upah, alerted that Ajaero has sustained more injuries in addition to having his right eye totally shut.
Ajaero, according to Upah, was brutalised further after being beaten, blindfolded, and transported to an unidentified location.
But Henry Okoye, spokesperson of the Imo Police Command, said the NLC president had a heated argument with some individuals who resisted the picketing of the airport in the state.
Okoye said to prevent an attack on Ajaero, the police took the NLC president into protective custody at the state police headquarters.
“Upon receiving this report, the Imo police command swiftly deployed police operatives to the scene where the officer in charge exercised his operational discretion by taking the NLC president into protective custody at the state command headquarters to ensure the protection of his life and that he was not lynched in the scuffle that followed,” the Imo police spokesperson said.
“The commissioner of police thereafter directed that he should be taken to the Police Medical Services, Owerri, where he would be accorded medical attention as a result of the attack.
“He was therefore accorded adequate security cover to proceed on his other legitimate engagements for the day.
“It is however necessary to emphasize the existence of a court injunction from the National Industrial Court of Nigeria holden in Owerri with Suit No. NICN/OW/41/2023 dated 27th October, 2023, barring the NLC from holding the intended protest rally in Owerri.
“The Commissioner of Police, Imo State Police Command, CP Mohammed Ahmed Barde, therefore urges all concerned parties to ensure compliance with the Court directives so as to avoid jeopardizing the current security arrangements in Owerri and other parts of Imo State, even as the State gears up for the forthcoming electioneering process on 11th November 2023.”
On October 30, the NLC promised to ground activities in Imo from November 1, to protest the alleged violation of rights and privileges of workers.
Ajaero had alleged that the Imo government has not paid some workers for 20 months.