The Minister of Power, Prof. Chinedu Nebo, has asked the management of Manitoba Hydro, the management contractors for the Transmission Company of Nigeria (TCN) to respect the rights of Nigerian workers as entrenched in the law of the land.

The minister who was speaking at a meeting to iron out lingering issues between officials of Manitoba Hydro and Power Holding Company of Nigeria (PHCN) union executives, in Abuja yesterday, also asked the workers to work with Manitoba so as to take the power sector to the next level.

Nebo also used the opportunity to further clarify that “the role of Manitoba Hydro International in the running of the nation’s transmission network is that of delegated authority given to a management outfit with international clout, for a stipulated period of 3 – 5 years.”

He explained that the clarification became necessary “in order to erase the impression being created especially among PHCN labour unions that Manitoba has already taken position as concessioners of the TCN,” a statement by the ministry’s Deputy Director/Head of Press, Timothy Oyedeji, said.

Stressing the need for both parties to work in harmony, Nebo said:“In today’s world everything must be bench-marked within the dictate of international standards; hence we must provide the enabling environment at this stage of our transition for business to thrive.”

While explaining the uniqueness of the sector in Nigeria to the Manitoba officials, Nebo added: “We want peace to reign, the work in the hands of Manitoba is enormous, we must have a robust transmission network that is why Manitoba is very important.

“Nobody takes over without settlement, workers are Nigerians like us, TCN is 100 per cent wholly owned by the government, there is no-going to be lay-off, management is done through agreement, no one should be afraid, Manitoba Hydro International is under the board of TCN which is turn under the power ministry,” he said.