Nigeria Labour Congress, NLC has said it considered among others the social political mood in Nigeria arising from the last general elections as a reason it called off the nationwide strike action it has mobilized workers to kick start on Wednesday following the decision of President Bola Ahmed Tinubu to remove fuel subsidy forever.
NLC in a communique signed by its President, Joe Ajaero and General Secretary, Emmanuel Ugboaja said the workers Union in an emergency meeting of the National Executive Council, NEC on Tuesday, considered it necessary to pursue the political stability of Nigeria hence the NEC welcomed the decision of the workers leadership to call off the strike and give more time for negotiation with the Federal Government.
President Bola Ahmed Tinubu had on Monday, May 29, 2023 during his inauguration as the President of Nigeria said the era of fuel subsidy in country is gone.
NLC President, Joe Ajaero kicked against the decision of the President, insisting, the decision to remove fuel subsidy will cause Nigerians untold hardship and thereafter, fixed Wednesday June 7, 2023 for Nigeria workers to begin nationwide strike or withdraw their services.
Below is the excerpt of the communique issued at the end of the National Executive Council meeting of Nigeria Labour Congress. Therein, the NLC stated reasons it called off the nationwide strike action.
COMMUNIQUE AT THE END OF AN EMERGENCY NATIONAL EXECUTIVE COUNCIL (NEC) MEETING OF THE NIGERIA LABOUR CONGRESS (NLC) HELD ON TUESDAY, THE 6TH DAY OF JUNE 2023.
An emergency National Executive Council (NEC) of the Congress which was called to discuss the outcome of the Dialogue between the NLC and the Federal Government on the Petroleum Products Price hike after extensive deliberation observed that:
Whereas the previous NEC-in-Session had ordered a nation-wide withdrawal of Service and mass protest over the Petroleum Price hike by the federal government;
Whereas the federal government was in breach of the 2023 Appropriation Act, the NLC will not encourage lawlessness on its part;
Taking into account that the federal government has procured a Court injunction restraining Congress from proceeding with the proposed nation-wide strike as the NEC-in-session had ordered to begin, Wednesday, the 7th of June, 2023;
Recognizing the willingness of government for continuous engagement through dialogue and to offer reasonable palliatives in due course to cushion the effect of its policies and some levels of understanding reached
Considering the mood of the Socio-polity last elections and the need to pursue national stability and; Consequently, the NEC-in-session resolved as follows;
To commend and applaud the diligence of the Congress’ leadership in carrying out the assignment given to it by NEC.
To demonstrate to the federal government the need to comply with the Laws of the land especially as it concerns obedience to the rulings of the Courts and their brazen disregard to the 2023 Appropriation Act
To therefore support and accept the decision of the leadership of Congress to suspend the proposed strike action in compliance with the flawed rulings of the NIC and also allow negotiations to flow freely and enable final agreement during or after the 19th June, 2023 negotiation round with the federal government
To however register in strongest terms its disgust and disapproval with the ruling of the National Industrial Court (NIC) for its continuous weaponization of the instrument of Exparte injunction in favour of Government against the interests of Nigerian workers in defiance of the position of the Supreme Court on the use of this instrument.
All Affiliates and State Councils of Congress are hereby directed to suspend further action and mobilization until the outcome of the final negotiations.
To commend all Affiliates and State Councils on their robust mobilization towards a successful nation-wide strike action and to also remain vigilant in case there is a need to continue.