THE Nigeria Labour Congress (NLC) called a five-day warning general strike in Kaduna State from Monday 17th May. For three days growing protests were held in Kaduna. Water, electricity, schools, offices, trains, airlines, banks and more all came to a standstill. The strike was suspended on the evening of Wednesday due to an invitation to a meeting by the Minister of Labour. Here the NLC agreed to “no further industrial action on these issues” and Kaduna State agreed to no victimisation. The NLC has maintained the suspension of the strike, but Kaduna State retrenched 18 lecturers from the State University for supporting the strike. The National Executive Council agreed on 22nd June to mobilise to return to strike action.
Members of the Parliamentary Staff Association of Nigeria (PASAN) started their indefinite strike on 23rd March, over the lack of financial independence for State Houses of Assembly. All State Houses of Assembly were shut. Section 121(3) of the Federal Constitution and Presidential Order 10 of 2020 gave autonomy, but this had not been implemented as state governors wanted to hold on to their financial powers. The return to work finally took place on Monday 14th June.
Judiciary workers, members of JUSUN, started national indefinite strike from Tuesday 6th April and ended it on Monday 14th June. The strike continued throughout negotiations and an agreement that was signed by the union on 20th May. It was later signed by the governors’ representative, but the union was still concerned about implementation. On 8th June, a five-man committee was set up to monitor the implementation of the Memorandum of Action (MOA) signed between the Nigeria Governors’ Forum (NGF) and the Judiciary Staff Union of Nigeria (JUSUN) on financial autonomy for the Judiciary.
The Academic Staff Union of Polytechnics (ASUP) on Tuesday 6th April declared an indefinite strike. Following appraisal of a report indicating gradual implementation of the items contained in the memorandum of action signed between the union and the Federal Government, the union resolved to suspend its 65-day-old industrial action with effect from Thursday, June 10. The suspension is for a period of three months to enable the government complete execution of the items contained in the memorandum of action signed with the union since April 27.
NLC and TUC in Nasarawa State started a general strike from Wednesday, 16th June. Grade levels 1 to 6 received the N30,000, but local government workers did not. Despite this, the local government workers did not join the strike. Thus only 3,300 workers benefited out of the 16,000 workers in the State. In the month before the strike, the governor presented 25 brand new SUVs to the first-class traditional rulers in the state, valued at over N800 million. The council of traditional chiefs then appealed for the strike to be postponed – and it was put back by a week! Salary arrears from August 2016 are also outstanding. The state has agreed not to implement its threat of no-work-no-pay. But the state wants to include a clause in the agreement that the promotions will be reversed if FAAC allocations drop below N4 billion a month in future. So the strike continues.
Nasarawa health workers, members of Coalition of Health Professionals Association, started an indefinite strike from Monday 6th June. Some of their complaints are lack of promotions since 2011, failure of implementation of N30, 000 minimum wage for its members and lack of annual increment among others. They pulled out of the agreement as they want their promotions paid for June rather than August.
Members of the National Association of Government General Medical and Dental Practitioners in Ondo State began a two-week warning strike on 10th June. The state government had failed to pay their salary arrears for some months. They also alleged that the state had failed to resolve the issue of the exodus of doctors and other health workers, among other issues. Doctors in the state struck for most of February 2021 over the same issues.
The Joint Action Committee (JAC) of the Akwa Ibom State University re-commenced its suspended strike action over alleged non-payment of at least 10 months’ salary arrears and other issues on Monday, 19th April. The JAC comprises the institutions’ Academic Staff Union of Universities, Non-Academic Staff Union of Educational and Associated Institutions, Senior Staff Association of Nigeria Universities and the National Association of Academic Technologists. The strike was suspended on Wednesday, June 9, 2021 with a promise that the first payment of salary arrears would be made that week.
The Academic Staff Union of Universities (ASUU), Ambrose Alli University, Edo State, on Friday 26th March began an indefinite strike over unpaid five-month salaries and remittance of over 13 months’ unpaid check-off dues and other deductions from staff members’ salaries. The strike was suspended on 31st May. The agreement specified that the lecturers would be paid at least two months’ salary within a week.
The Private Telecommunications and Communications Senior Staff Association of Nigeria (PTECSSAN – https://ptecssan.ng/be-a-member), Nigeria’s sole trade union in the telecommunications industry, held a nationwide three-day warning strike from Wednesday 16th June over alleged violation of national labour laws by employers.
The Joint Health Sector Union/coalition (JOHESU) at the University of Ilorin Teaching Hospital (UITH) on Wednesday 16th June, began a three-day warning strike to protest against poor conditions of service at the hospital and lack of promotions since 2018.
STRIKES BULLETIN, compiled by Socialist Labour and edited by Comrade Femi Aborisade, human rights lawyer and activist, is produced once a month. Socialist Labour is appealing to trade union leaders as well as workers in general to please assist it by submitting details of any strikes or other protests from across the country to the Socialist Labour WhatsApp group or to [email protected].