Trade Union Congress of Nigeria (TUC) was registered as a labour centre on 8th of August, 2005 when the then President of TUC, Comrade (Dr.) Peace Obiajulu, received the certificate of registration. Prior to that date, TUC had gone through various transformations starting in 1980, first as Federation of Senior Staff Associations of Nigeria (FESSAN), then as Senior Staff Consultative Association of Nigeria (SESCAN) and, finally, TUC.

The story actually began in 1976 when the Michael Abiodun Commission was set up by the Federal Military Government to sanitise and rationalise the labour climate in Nigeria. It will not be an exaggeration to say that one could find a labour organisation in every 50km range of any Nigerian city of that time. The situation was certainly unmanageable.

As a result of the work of the Commission, certain issues were born.  They include:

  • Rationalisation of the hundreds of industrial unions in the country into forty-two (42) industrial unions
  • Separation of senior staff associations from the industrial unions
  • Creation of four professional associations and nine employer associations.

The Commission also recommended a single labour centre for the 42 industrial unions and none for the senior staff associations.  The senior staff associations were therefore left completely unprotected.  The need thus arose for a clearing centre for the senior staff associations, whereupon a meeting of the concerned unions and leaders was held on 18th April, 1980 at the then 53 Funsho Williams Avenue, Surulere, Lagos secretariat of Shops and Distributive Trade Senior Staff Association (SHOPDIS).  The meeting endorsed a motion by the then Vice President of SHOPDIS, Comrade M. B. Ladenegan, to establish FESSAN.  In actualising this, the input of the following unions must be acknowledged.

  • Construction and Civil Engineering Senior Staff Association (CCESSA)
  • Precision, Electricity and Related Equipment Senior Staff Association (PERESSA)
  • Chemical and Non-Metallic Products Senior Staff Association (CANMPSSA)
  • Senior Staff Association of Utilities, Statutory Corporations and Government-Owned Companies (SSAUSCGOC).

We must also put on record the efforts of individuals like Comrades Femi Kila, Abraham Oga, G. Arogundade, F. Ifelaja, etc.

History was further made in 1985 at the Federal Palace Hotel, Victoria Island, Lagos when the nucleus of what came to be called TUC was inaugurated at the 1st National Delegates Conference of FESSAN on the 2nd day of May of that year. On the 24th of April, 1986, the NEC of FESSAN passed a resolution renaming the organisation as SESCAN, and SESCAN was registered in 1986 under the Land Perpetual Succession Act of (Cap 98 of 1968). This was the position until 2005 when TUC was recognised by the Federal Government.

This journey of more than a quarter of a century was not without resistance from the Government and the existing privileged labour centre,  yet the people’s will to take their destiny into their own hands and to protect their right to self determination prevailed.  Indeed it is on record that TUC is the only labour centre that fulfilled all righteousness in becoming the people’s labour centre because it is a product of the people’s will rather than government fiat.


Trade Union Congress of Nigeria (TUC) is an affiliate of International Trade Unions Confederation (ITUC).

The International Trade Unions Confederation (ITUC) is the main international trade union organisation, representing the interests of working people worldwide. The ITUC was founded at its inaugural congress held in Vienna, Austria on 1st – 3rd of November, 2006. It groups together the former affiliates of the International Confederation of Free Trade Unions (ICFTU) and the World Confederation of Labour (WCL), along with trade union organisations which had no global affiliation. The ICFTU and the WCL dissolved themselves on 31st of October, 2006 to pave way for the creation of the ITUC.

The ITUC regional organizations are the Asia-Pacific Regional Organization (ITUC-AP), the African Regional Organization (ITUC-AF) and the American Regional Organization.


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