Wednesday, 18 May 2016

Labour unions insist on nationwide strike; ...claims court order is a 'black market injunction'

Labour Unions kicks off nationwide strike
The National Industrial Court, NIC, sitting in Abuja, yesterday, stopped the Nigerian Labour Congress, NLC, and the Trade Unions Congress, TUC, from embarking on strike today.

Nigeria Labour Congress, NLC, faction, led by Ayuba Wabba, alongside TUC, and Joint Action Front, JAF, at separate meetings in Abuja and Lagos, described the restraining order by NIC as a black market injunction.

This came as Organised Labour and its civil society allies, yesterday, vowed to go ahead with the planned indefinite strike from today to make government reverse the N145 per litre pump price of petrol, despite the restraining order by the court.

Organised Labour’s position came on a day president of a faction of the Nigeria Labour Congress, NLC, Mr. Joe Ajaero, said Nigeria Union of Petroleum and Natural Gas Workers, NUPENG, Petroleum and Natural Gas Senior Staff Association of Nigeria, PENGASSAN, National Union of Electricity Employees, NUEE, and others would not join the strike.

Consequently, the Wabba faction and the Federal Government, yesterday, agreed to set up a joint technical committee to review the new fuel pump price template of N135-N145 within the next two weeks and also work towards reviewing the current national minimum wage of N18, 000.

President of the National Industrial Court, NIC, Justice Babatunde Adejumo, in a ruling, yesterday, restrained the labour unions from going on strike, pending the determination of a suit the federal government lodged before it.

Justice Adejumo further ordered all the parties to maintain status quo until the legal dispute was settled.

The order followed an ex-parte application filed by the Attorney General of the Federation and Minister of Justice, Abubakar Malami, SAN.

The restraining order against the respondents will lapse after seven days.

However, Organised Labour and its civil society allies, incensed by government’s decision to seek rederess at the NIC in the midst of a negotiation, yesterday, vowed to go ahead with the planned indefinite strike from today to make government reverse the N145 per litre pump price of petrol.

Credit: Vanguard

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