The immediate past General Secretary of the Nigeria Labour Congress (NLC), Comrade John Odah, has been appointed as Executive Secretary of the Organisation of Trade Unions of West Africa (OTUWA).
Odah’s appointment is contained in a memo signed by Comrade Mademba Sock, President of OTUWA, which was circulated to affiliates of the organisation across West Africa. In the memo titled: “Appointment of New Executive Secretary of OTUWA,” and dated January 2016, Comrade Sock stated: “As agreed at its Executive Committee meeting in Dakar, Senegal in November 2015, and in accordance with the relevant provision of OTUWA Constitution, I write to inform you that Comrade John Odah has been appointed as Executive Secretary of the organisation with effect from 1st January 2016.”
According to the President of OTUWA, with Odah’s appointment, “our organisation is set for full revitalisation to serve the aspirations of the working people of West Africa.” He called on the 68 affiliate member trade union centres to extend their cooperation and support to the new Executive Secretary.
Comrade Odah has vast experience in trade unionism having worked in the NLC for 26 years. Apart from being the longest serving General Secretary of NLC for over ten years, Odah served as Vice President of the defunct International Confederation of Free Trade Unions (ICFTU), Vice President of International Trade Union Confederation – African Region (ITUC-Africa), member of the General Council of the International Trade Union Confederation, and for several years as alternate worker delegate at the International Labour Conference.
Comrade Odah holds a Master’s Degree in Political Sociology from the University of Jos in 1986, and attended the Senior Executive Course of the National Institute of Policy and Strategic Studies (NIPSS), Kuru Jos in 2004.
In the letter of appointment sent to Comrade Odah, the President of OTUWA informed him that as Executive Secretary, Odah will head the Secretariat of the organisation, prepare documents for the governing bodies of the organisation, take minutes of all organs of the organisations, prepare a database on the operations of the organisation and affiliate organisations, among other duties that may be assigned to him. Comrade Odah officially resumed duties on January 15, 2016.
Meanwhile OTUWA has relocated its headquarters from Conakry, Guinea, to Abuja Nigeria. The new secretariat of the organisation will be hosted by the NLC at its Paschal Bafyau Labour House National Headquarters, Central Business District, Abuja.