June 24, 2024

Public Appeals to NLC: Avoid Shutting Down National Grid Amid Minimum Wage Dispute

 

 

 

As the ongoing dispute between the Nigeria Labour Congress (NLC) and the Federal Government over the proposed minimum wage intensifies, Nigerian citizens are urging the labour union to avoid disrupting the national grid during any potential strike action.

 

On Monday, the NLC rejected the government’s offers of ₦62,000 or ₦100,000 as the new minimum wage, dismissing these figures as “starvation wages.” Assistant General Secretary Chris Onyeka made the union’s stance clear, stating, “We have never considered accepting ₦62,000 or any other wage that we know is below what we know can take Nigerian workers home. We will not negotiate a starvation wage,” during an interview on Channels Television.

 

The NLC has steadfastly maintained its demand for a ₦250,000 minimum wage, which Onyeka described as “enough concession to the government and the other social partners in this particular situation.” With the one-week grace period given to the Federal Government expiring at midnight on Tuesday, June 11, 2024, tensions are high.

 

Amidst these developments, Nigerians have taken to social media to voice their concerns about the potential impact of a nationwide strike on the power sector. Many have pleaded with the NLC to spare the national grid, recalling the severe disruptions caused by a previous power outage last week.

 

“Okay good, do not touch the national grid. Please, I am begging you,” tweeted @TaoFeek182. Another user, @Ishow_leck, shared similar sentiments: “You guys should do whatever you want to do, but please keep off from the power grid this time. Let’s all sit home and relax peacefully.”

 

The previous week’s power outages, which left many Nigerians without electricity for extended periods, have heightened fears about the repercussions of another grid shutdown. “If NLC is going for a strike and National Grid/electricity is going with them, they might start losing the support of the masses. NLC should be smart about this, please. You need the support of the people to be able to pressure those in power,” cautioned @KhadijaGarba19.

 

Concerns about the impact on essential services were also prominent. @Letter_to_Jack pleaded, “Do what you have to but keep your hands off the National Grid this time. For the sake of some of us who want to watch Euros and other patriotic citizens who care about people in hospitals who need light in the ICU. Thanks and God bless.”

 

However, some voices called for more drastic measures. @Emmanuelkalu546 advocated, “Shut down the national grid,” while @AdeyemiGCFR wrote, “Awesome. Let’s shut down everywhere, firstly, the National Grid!”

 

The debate on social media reflects the divided opinions among Nigerians about the appropriate tactics for the NLC. @Dambatta_1 stated, “₦62k as salary is an insult to the intelligence of the Nigerian workers. The NLC should resume their relaxed strike immediately. Shut down the National Grid, Airports, Banks, Train Stations, NNPC, CBN and Co. Let them bring the country to a standstill.”

 

Echoing the sentiment, Joseph Umoh (@umohjoe) tweeted, “Very insensitive Government! You never settle with the poor Nigerian people you go increase Chief Justice wages 300%! Please if putting off the National grid will make them listen GO AHEAD! Aluta continua!!”

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