AFBTE Decries Closure Of Companies By NLRC
By Umoru Abdulkadir, Lagos
Employers of Labour under the umbrella body of The Association of Food Beverages and Tobacco Employers (AFBTE), have decried the recent closure of Companies in its industrial sector by the National Lottery Regulatory Commission (NLRC).
The position of the Association was made known to newsmen through a statement issued from its secretariat in Lagos on Thursday.
It stated that the association was saddened by the action of NLRC in its industrial sector in an attempt to force them to make payments that have over time been contested and are currently subject of litigation in the Court.
The Association expressed its dissatisfaction with what it terms unacceptable act, especially in a democratic setting where the actions of all and sundry and especially those of government and its agencies should be guided by the rule of law and respect for the country’s judicial institutions and process.
‘We are more worried that this is happening at a time when all hands should be on deck to increase the productive base of the Nigerian economy, promote commerce and step up development efforts’, the statement further said.
The Association however, implored the Federal Government, through the office of the Secretary to the Government of the Federation, who supervises the Commission, as well as the Minister of Industry, Trade and Investment to help in reminding the Management of the NLRC of the law setting it up and its scope of operations.
It noted that the National Lottery Act, 2005 does not empower it to act in the manner it has resorted to of late and the Commission also needs to be reminded that the matter is before a court of competent jurisdiction and as such none of the parties should take any precipitate action that will present the court with a fait accompli.
Finally, the Association appealed to the Commission to follow the law in all its actions and in this particular matter and allow the Court to rule on it.
The National Lottery Regulatory Commission (NLRC) had on the 12th and 13th of November, 2018 respectively, sealed off the Headquarters premises of Nigerian Breweries in Lagos and two of its premises in FCT, Abuja over failure of the Companies to pay certain disputed fees on the Company’s consumer sales promotions, which demands the company had resisted on the basis of the pending court action.
The offices were subsequently unsealed by the Commission in the evening of 13th November, 2018.