The Trade Union Congress (TUC), says it has set up one billion dollar Economic Development Fund for the actualisation of its Economic Development Plan.
The president of TUC, Bobboi Kaigama, stated this at the TUC’s 10th Triennial National Delegates Conference in Abuja on Thursday.
Mr. Kaigama said the fund would provide additional income streams for its members and affiliates and also provide loans for those still in service, and after service.
“This fund will be used to make strategic investments into the different sectors of the economy.
“Part of this fund will be set aside to provide loans and the required technical assistance for our members to set up and run bankable businesses when they retire from service.
“Through this plan, the TUC will mobilise resources from its members, affiliates, partners and other investors to invest in a number critical assets across different sectors of the economy.
“By so doing, TUC and its members can take advantage of the existing investment opportunities in lucrative areas of financial services, power, housing, agriculture, oil and gas, infrastructure, among others.”
He said TUC and its members will be given the opportunity to invest into and benefit from the various businesses by subscribing to the TUC Development Fund.
“From June, each member will be given an opportunity to invest at least N50, 000 into this fund.
“There is an incredible interest in this fund already but our members and their families will be given priority to invest.
“I encourage each of you to get members of your family to be part of this dream by investing in this fund.
“By making this decision, we will be changing the lives and guaranteeing our future and that of our families.’’
He said unions had waited helplessly for decades as major government organisations had been bought by private individuals through privatisation and in turn decided the fate and future of workers.
He said by the establishment of the fund, TUC would have the numerical strength, collective bargaining power and economic might to its full advantage.
Mr. Kaigama said TUC would no longer be a spectator but rather an investor in the economy.
“We must join hands with government and other citizens to build a country that is devoid of injustice.
“We must create and ensure job security, fund education, refrain from money laundering and corrupt practices and recognise market men/women and peasants, among others.
“We believe that through this innovation, we shall see a Nigeria where productive enterprise flourishes in an atmosphere of mutual benefit, industrial harmony and cohesion between the government, private employers and labour.”
The theme of the conference is: Labour and National Re-orientation: The Change We Want.