By: Ologun Ayonitemi
The Nigeria Labour Congress is planning a two-day nationwide warning strike in response to the economic difficulties following the subsidy removal by the Federal Government, threatening to bring the economy to a standstill.
Key stakeholders, including banks, civil society groups, and workers’ unions, are backing this move, joining forces to tackle the country’s escalating economic crisis.
On Monday the National Union of Banks, Insurance and Financial Institutions Employees, the group representing banking and insurance workers, pledge to join the strike, potentially halting financial activities throughout Nigeria.
Mr Mohammed Sheikh, the general Secretary of NUBIFIE, signed a statement emphasizing their involvement in the NLC’s two-day warning strike, highlighting the necessity to alert the government to Nigerians’ severe economic plight.
NUBIFIE’s leadership has announced that all banks will close on Tuesday, September 5, and Wednesday, September 6, 2023, adhering to the NLC’s two-day strike directive.
“The directives are imperative to get the needed attention of the government and to warn it against interfering in the internal affairs of unions instead of addressing the punishing economic circumstances we find ourselves in,” the statement pointed out.
The Senior Deputy General Secretary of NUBIFIE, Mr. Aboderin Olusola, while speaking with journalists repeated their dedication to the NLC’S cause, highlighting the importance of unity among industrial unions in these challenging times.
“It was NLC’s directive to all the industrial unions and NUBIFIE didn’t have any option than to issue that circular to all our members and management of banks and insurance companies in Nigeria.” Olusola said.
Wale Okunniyi, the head of the United Action Front’s National Coordinating Centre, signed a statement. The organization voiced anger over the government’s choice to end fuel subsidies and hike up the price of premium motor spirit, causing hardship for Nigerians.
The Maritime Workers Union of Nigeria supports the Nigerian Labour Congress’s decision to start a two-day warning strike. This was stated in a Monday letter titled ‘Compliance to the Nigerian Labour Congress directive on a nationwide two-day warning strike’, signed by MWUN’s Media Head, John Ikemefuna.
On Friday, the NLC announced a two-day warning strike due to the Tinubu-led Federal Government’s lack of dialogue with stakeholders about the effects of fuel subsidy removal on petrol, impacting the poor masses. The announcement was made in a communiqué signed by its National President, Joe Ajaero, and Secretary, Emmanuel Ugboaja.
MWUN’s President General, Adewale Adeyanju, instructed all associated groups to participate in the two-day nationwide strike.
“This decision is due to the Federal Government’s refusal to engage and reach an agreement with the organized labor on critical issues of the consequences of the unfortunate hike in the price of petrol, which has unleashed massive suffering on Nigerian workers and the generality of the Nigerian citizens.”
“The MWUN as an affiliate of the NLC, is obliged to comply with the directive and has consequently instructed all our members in all ports, jetties, terminals, and oil and gas platforms nationwide to partake on the two days total shut down warning strike as directed by the NLC.” Adewale said