Why We’re Starting an Indefinite Strike


Why We’re Starting an Indefinite Strike


Nigerian workers, who play a crucial role in sustaining our nation’s economy, deserve wages that reflect the current economic conditions, according to labor leaders.

On Friday, Organized Labour announced its plan to initiate an indefinite nationwide strike starting Monday, June 3rd. This decision stems from the Federal Government’s failure to finalize and implement a new national minimum wage law and its refusal to reduce the electricity tariff from N225/kwh to N65/kwh.

At a joint press conference in Abuja, following a meeting with the Federal Government on minimum wage negotiations, Nigeria Labour Congress (NLC) President Joe Ajaero and Trade Union Congress of Nigeria (TUC) President Festus Osifo criticized the government’s lack of seriousness and respect towards the demands of Nigerian workers. They pointed out that no high-ranking government officials attended the meeting, signifying the government’s lack of commitment.

The labor leaders specifically highlighted the absence of governors and key ministers, with only the Minister of State for Labour and Employment, Nkeiruka Onyejeocha, present. They described this as disrespectful and indicative of the government’s indifference towards a successful minimum wage negotiation.

Consequently, the trade unions announced their decision to embark on an indefinite nationwide strike, citing the government’s ongoing display of insincerity.

“This decision arises from the stalled national minimum wage negotiations, as the government has neither resolved nor legislated a new national minimum wage Act,” they explained.

The labor leaders accused the government of showing no significant progress or commitment, despite the ultimatum given on May 1, 2024.

Regarding the electricity tariff increase, the labor leaders accused the government of ignoring demands to reverse the hike and failing to consult with stakeholders beforehand. They condemned the categorization of consumers into different bands and referenced a nationwide protest on May 13, 2024, which sought government action by the end of the month, only to be met with continued indifference.

Nigerian workers, integral to our nation’s economy, deserve fair wages that reflect the economic situation. It is disheartening that despite repeated calls and a clear ultimatum, the government neglects its responsibility towards the workforce and instead seeks to undermine and intimidate union leaders.

The unions emphasized the necessity for the government to prioritize the welfare of its people. They noted that the increased electricity tariffs have deteriorated living conditions, depriving citizens of decent lives.

Due to these unmet demands, the unions announced an indefinite nationwide strike and urged all affiliates, state councils, civil society organizations, market traders, and the general public to prepare for decisive action.

“We will not tolerate any more delays or excuses. The welfare of Nigerian workers and citizens is non-negotiable, and we are committed to taking all necessary measures to protect their rights and ensure their voices are heard,” the leaders asserted.


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