… Threaten Countrywide Strikes From September 23, 28
Following failed negotiations between The Minister of Labour and Employment, Chris Ngige, and the Trade Union Congress, the TUC has vowed to embark on a countrywide strike on September 23, should the Federal Government fail to resolve its concerns.
However, Ngige dismissed the seven-day ultimatum the TUC gave the Federal Government to reverse the price of petrol.
According to him, the letter written by the TUC should have been addressed to him, instead of the President Muhammadu Buhari.
On his part, the TUC President, Quadri Olaleye, said the issue of petrol price was beyond the minister, adding that Ngige should wait till September 23 to “see what would happen.”
‘NLC Issues 2-week Ultimatum To Reverse Fuel, Electricity Hikes, To Begin Strike Sept 28’
Similarly, the Nigeria Labour Congress issued a two-week ultimatum to the Federal Government to reverse its decision on the hikes in electricity tariff and the fuel pump price or face civil unrest nationwide.
In a communiqué read by the NLC President, Ayuba Wabba, the union said the ultimatum would take immediate effect, warning that it would mobilise its members nationwide for protests as from September 28.
In an interview, the NLC President said the national executive committee members and the state chapters as well as affiliates would meet on September 22 to decide on the strike action if the government failed to revert to the old prices by then.
He said, “Today’s (Wednesday) decision on the ultimatum was taken by the Central Working Committee of the NLC. But by the expiration of the ultimatum, if the government fails to reverse the increase in electricity tariffs and fuel pump price, we would hold a meeting on September 28 and take a decision on a strike action,” he disclosed.
Recall that the Federal Government had, two weeks ago, increased the ex-depot price of petrol from N 138.62 to N147.67, prompting marketers to adjust their petrol prices to between N158 and N162 from N148 to N150 in August. The ex-depot price is the price at which government sells petrol to marketers.
Besides the fuel hike being the third within three months, it came at a time electricity distribution companies increased their tariffs.
The TUC gave its seven-day ultimatum in a letter addressed to the President and dated September 4, 2020.
The letter titled, “We cannot bear the burden any longer, issuance of seven days ultimatum,” was signed by Olaleye; and the Secretary-General, Musa Lawal.
‘Ngige Insists TUC’s ultimatum letter Misplaced’
Ngige, in the interview with the State House correspondents said the TUC’s letter was misplaced, because it was addressed to the President, whom he claimed, is not recognised by the International Labour Organisation.
He gave an indication that the letter should have been addressed to him, and not Buhari.
The minister said, “On the TUC issue, the seven-day ultimatum was misplaced because they wrote the President and issued an ultimatum to him. The President is not recognised by the ILO.
“The competent authority for this nature of the dispute in Nigeria resides in the man who oversees them, which is whoever is the Minister of Labour and Employment.”
‘TUC mobilises 79 CSOs for Sept 23 protest’
The TUC said that the protest type would be communicated to Nigerians soon, adding that Nigerians would be mobilised through the 79 civil society groups that had signed up for participation in the protest.
“We are going to have a press conference to inform everybody; we are still in the planning stage. In the next few days, we are going to inform everybody. We are working with 79 CSOs across the country,” he explained.Follow us on social media