Northern Nigerian Breaking News

Nationwide strike looms as labour unions shun parley with FG

Leaders of the Nigeria Labour Congress, NLC, and their Trade Union Congress of Nigeria, TUC, counterparts, on Friday, shunned a meeting called by the Federal Government in a desperate effort to avert the planned nationwide strike from October 3.

The planned nationwide strike, among others, is to force the government to address its alleged insensitivity to the plights of Nigerians as a result of the removal of petrol subsidy and continuous demonstration of unwillingness and complete lack of initiative.

The two labour centres had equally advised Nigerians to stockpile foodstuffs because the strike would shut down economic activities in the country.

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According to the two labour centres, the government’s invitation came late as they had scheduled engagements outside Abuja, the federal capital.

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The government had, on Friday, summoned an emergency meeting with the leaders of NLC and TUC in an effort to sway Organized Labour and its allies to shelve the industrial action.

It was gathered the meeting, which was scheduled for Friday, 12 noon at Aso Villa, Conference Room of the Office of the Chief of Staff to Mr. President, was later shifted to the evening, to allow NLC and TUC to reach their leaders outside Abuja.

According to sources, the NLC and its TUC counterpart received the government’s invitation this morning through the Ministry of labour and Employment.

FG’s invitation letter

The invitation letter dated September 29 and cited by Vanguard, was signed on behalf of the Minister of Labour and Employment, Simon Lalong, by the Director, Trade Union Services and Industrial Relations, Emmanuel Igbinosun.

The letter titled “Impending labour union strike invitation to a meeting”, read in part: “I bring you greetings from the Honourable Ministers of Labour and Employment.

“I am directed to invite the leadership of the Trade Union Congress Nigeria (TUC) for a meeting with the Chief of Staff to Mr. President on the above subject, scheduled as follows:

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“Date: Friday, September 294, 2023; Time: 12 noon. Venue: Aso Villa, Conference Room of the Office of the Chief of Staff to Mr. President.

“Please be assured of the kind regards of the Hon. Minister of Labour and Employment.”

However, in a response to the Minister, the two labour centres in a letter dated September 29, requested for a new date next week.

The letter signed by Emmanuel Ugboaja, NLC’s General Secretary and Nuhu Toro, TUC’s Secretary General, titled “R-impending labour union strike: Invitation to meeting”, read: “We extend our warm regards to you and the entire team at your Ministry.

“We wish to express our sincere regrets for our inability to attend the proposed meeting between us and the Federal Government, scheduled for today the 29th Day of September due to already scheduled engagements our officials have outside Abuja.

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“Regrettably, the short notice provided for this meeting has posed significant logistical challenges for the majority of our leadership, rendering their participation unfeasible at this time.

“In light of this, and in the interest of ensuring that any discussions held are representative of the NLC’s and TUC’s collective stance, we find it imperative to request the rescheduling of the meeting.

“We trust that this request for a rescheduled meeting will be taken into consideration, and we look forward to your understanding in this matter.”


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