Barristers & Solicitors
Court faults ASUU, upholds recognition of CONUA, NAMDA
Abuja National Industrial Court

The National Industrial Court in Abuja has upheld the recognition of the Congress of Nigerian University Academics (CONUA) and the National Association of Medical and Dental Academics (NAMDA) as trade union organisations in the country.

In a judgment on Tuesday, the President of the court, Justice Benedict Kanyip held that among others, under the International Labour Organisation Act, it was not unlawful to have more than one trade union within an industry.

The judgment was on the suit by the Academic Staff Union of Universities (ASUU) against the Minister of Labour and Employment; the Registrar of Trade Union; CONUA and NAMDA.

Justice Kanyip held that, as against ASUU’s contention, Section 3(2) of the Trade Union Act empowers the Minister and Registrar of Trade Union to register CONUA and NAMDA to coexist and carry out the same functions in the universities as ASUU.

Kanyip further held that although the Section did not encourage the monopoly of trade unions, it allows for the existence of other trade unions.

The judge noted, as against the assertion by the claimant, NAMDA was not registered as a trade union until January 11.

He also noted that NAMDA collected the certificate of registration on January 13 and formally completed all processes to be registered as a trade union on January 17, 2023.

Justice Kanyip held that as of June 26, 2022, when the claimant filed the suit, NAMDA was not in existence.

He also held said that ASUU did not have any evidence when it came to court to file the suit.

The judge observed that ASUU wrongly described NAMDA as “Nigeria Association of Medical Doctors Academics” instead of ”National Association of Medical Doctors Academics.”

He, however, held that a suit can be allowed if a juristic entity is misnamed.

While dismissing the suit, the judge said: “The reliefs prayed by the claimant failed, refused and I so hold. I make no order as to cost.”