• Tuesday, October 03, 2023
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NLC vows to proceed with warning strike despite government’s overture

The Nigerian government is seeking to avert a two-day warning strike by the Nigeria Labour Congress (NLC) scheduled to begin on Tuesday.

The NLC has accused the government of abandoning negotiations and failing to implement some of the resolutions from previous engagements with the government.

The union has also listed six other grievances, including the police laying siege to the national headquarters of the National Union of Road Transport Workers, an alleged violation of rights and privileges of workers and trade unions in Imo State, interference in trade union matters by the Abia State Government, proposed demolition of houses by the Minister of the Federal Capital Territory, Nyesom Wike, among others.

Read also NLC announces two-day warning strike over fuel subsidy effects

According to reports, the government has said it is willing to meet with the NLC on Monday to reach an agreement and avert the strike.

The Minister of Information and National Orientation, Mohammed Idris, said the government is “hoping the warning strike can be averted” and that the two sides are “still engaged in discussions and have started to understand each other’s position more.”

The NLC has said it remains open to negotiations but has also said there is “no going back” on the two-day warning strike.

The union’s president, Joe Ajaero, said the strike is necessary to “cushion the effects of the removal of petrol subsidy on the ‘poor masses'” and to “address the excruciating mass suffering and impoverishment being experienced around the country.”

Read also Palliative delay: “We have our plans if they fail to act”-NLC

The strike will likely significantly impact the Nigerian economy, as it could disrupt transportation, manufacturing, and other sectors. The government hopes to avoid the strike, which would be a significant setback for its economic reform agenda.

The two sides are expected to meet on Monday to reach an agreement. If they cannot agree, the strike will start on  Tuesday.

Christopher Onyeka, the union’s Assistant National Secretary, said that the government had not invited them to any meeting, but the labour union is open to discussions.

“The labour movement is a negotiation platform built around dialogue. We are not the ones who left the table; the government has been running away from the table.”