Labour orders nationwide strike in Nigeria, demands N50,000 minimum wage
The Nigeria Labour Congress has directed all its members and affiliate unions to commence a nationwide strike on Thursday
The organised labour had held a meeting with the Minister of Labour and Employment, Chris Ngige, in Abuja on Wednesday, which did not produce the expected outcome.
The NLC President, Ayuba Wabba, said the industrial action would commence due to the refusal of the Federal Government to reconvene the meeting of the tripartite national minimum wage committee to enable it to conclude its work.
He said, “In compliance with this mandate, all workers and private sector at all levels across the country have been directed to comply.
“All public and private institutions, offices, banks, schools, public and private business premises, including filling station, are to remain shut till further notice,” Wabba said at a news conference in Abuja on Wednesday.
The workers are demanding a new minimum wage of about N50,000 from the current national minimum wage of N18,000.
NUPENG, COEASU, JUSUN workers to join strike
The Petroleum and Natural Gas Senior Staff Association of Nigeria said it would join the strike as long as its labour centre – the Trade Union Congress – was involved.
The spokesman for the organisation, Mr Babatunde Oke, said, “We are going to be part of it. As long as our labour centre is involved, we are also involved. We are going to take part in the strike if TUC so directs us.”
Also, the national leadership of the Judiciary Staff Union of Nigeria directed its members to join the warning strike.
The President of JUSUN, Mr Marwan Adamu, said in a statement on Wednesday that “effective from midnight on Wednesday” all courts in the country must remain closed pending a counter instruction from the national secretariat of the union.”
On its part, the Colleges of Education Academic Staff Union said that it would embark on the warning strike in solidarity with the NLC.
The COEASU National President, Nuhu Ogirima, said, “The academic union will join the strike because it has become evident that dialogue and diplomacy would not make the government change its stance.
He said, “It is also expedient to take this action against the crass insensitivity of governments at both state and federal levels to the plight of the colleges of education.”
ASUU to consult with leadership
But the Academic Staff Union of Universities said it would consult with its leadership and trustees before joining the strike.
The ASUU National President, Prof. Biodun Ogunyemi, told one of our correspondents on the telephone on Wednesday that he could not decide without an approval from the ASUU executives and trustees.
Ogunyemi said, “We are part of the NLC. We are an affiliate of the NLC. But we are waiting for the final decision and we are consulting. I am also consulting with the ASUU leadership.”
But the Owerri Zonal Coordinator of ASUU, Prof Uzo Onyebinama, during a press conference at the Nnamdi Azikiwe University, Awka, Anambra State, on Wednesday said the union might join the strike.