TOWARDS putting into effect the decision of its Central Working Committee
(CWC) which held yesterday at its Paschal Bafyau Labour House National Headquarters in Abuja, the Nigeria Labour Congress (NLC) has written to its affiliate unions directing them to “immediately commence necessary actions towards full mobilization of their members across the country for total compliance.”
In a four-page letter entitled: “Communication of the Decision of the Central Working
Committee of the Nigeria Labour Congress,” and made available to National Record on Thursday, Comrade Emmanuel Ugboaja, NLC General Secretary, who signed the letter, said the preparation is necessary “should government fail to meet our demand for a reversal of the recent increase in the price of refined petroleum products.”
He also directed the affiliates to write their state councils to also immediately commence mobilization in their states for total compliance with the indefinite strike.
Comrade Ugboaja further directed that such communication should be copied the NLC national secretariat as he called on the affiliates to “await further instructions from the national leadership of Congress.”
Emergency CWC and Directive
Yesterday; Wednesday, September 16, 2020, the CWC of met following the deadlock in the dialogue between the federal government and organised labour on Tuesday this week, to deliberate on the next steps for the NLC to embark on.
In a communiqué it issued at the end of the meeting, it directed its affiliate unions to commence the mass mobilisation of Nigerians for an indefinite strike and protest.
The NLC in the communiqué co-signed by its President, Comrade Ayuba Wabba, and General Secretary, Comrade Ugboaja, gave the federal government a two-week ultimatum within which to reverse the recent increment in the price of petrol and electricity tariff or face an indefinite strike and peaceful protest beginning on Monday, September 28, 2020.
According to the communiqué, the CWC arrived at the decision following careful consideration of the “socio-economic realities especially in the light of the insufferable hardship they present to the working-class family and the masses of our people in Nigeria.”
The communiqué states in part: “The CWC resolved to issue a 2 weeks ultimatum for an indefinite strike action and peaceful protest, to take effect from Monday, 28th September 2020, if government fails to reverse the recent hike in the pump price of petrol and electricity tariff;
“The CWC resolved that government must demonstrate its commitment to resuscitating Nigeria’s four public refineries and building new ones as a sustainable response to the perennial instability and hike in the pump price of refined petroleum products particularly petrol, diesel and kerosene;
“The NLC will begin mass mobilization of the Nigerian people, professional groups, religious organizations, market women, the informal sector and Congress civil society allies towards total compliance to the indefinite strike action. Pursuant to this, a meeting of the National Executive Council (NEC) has been scheduled for Tuesday, 22nd September 2020.”
The NLC also expanded the scope of its demands by calling on the government to “expeditiously negotiate with trade unions in Nigeria’s tertiary education and health sectors in order to bring to an end the current industrial actions.”
It similarly urged government to immediately resolve “the difficulties being experienced by workers in accessing their full salaries and allowances on IPPIS platform and immediately release “all withheld statutory deductions including check off dues to all affected trade unions.”