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NLC, TUC Halt Strike

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CEM REPORT, ENERGY | Labour Unions in the country have announced a suspension of their planned strike in protest against the fuel subsidy removal.

The strike scheduled to commence on Wednesday, June 7th, 2023, was suspended after a meeting between the federal government and the labour unions at the Presidential Villa, Abuja late on Monday evening (5th of June 2023).

The Nigerian Labour Congress (NLC) and the Trade Union Congress (TUC), agreed to suspend the notice of strike to enable further consultations.

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The resolution was contained in a notice signed by the Speaker of the House of Representatives, Femi Gbajabiamila; the President of the NLC, Joe Ajaero; the President of the TUC, Festus Osifo and Kachollom Daju, permanent secretary of Federal Ministry of Labour and Employment.

Gbajabiamila, while reading the communiqué to state house correspondents stated that an agreement was struck between the NLC, TUC and the team set up by President Bola Tinubu to discuss the issues arising from the subsidy removal.

He added that all parties will reconvene on June 19, 2023, to agree on implementation.

“The Federal Government, the TUC and the NLC would review World Bank Financed Cash transfer scheme and propose the inclusion of low-income earners in the programme.

“The Federal Government, the TUC and the NLC to revive the CNG conversion programme earlier agreed with Labour centres in 2021 and work out detailed implementation and timing.

“The Labour centres and the Federal Government to review issues hindering effective delivery in the education sector and propose solutions for implementation.

“The Labour centres and the Federal Government to review and establish the framework for completion of the rehabilitation of the nation’s refineries.

“The Federal Government to provide a framework for the maintenance of roads and expansion of rail networks across the country. All other demands submitted by the TUC to the Federal Government will be assessed by the joint committee.

“Consequently, the parties agreed as follows: The NLC to suspend the notice of strike forthwith to enable further consultations. The TUC and the NLC are to continue the ongoing engagements with the Federal Government and secure closure on the resolutions above. The Labour Centres and the Federal Government to meet on June 19, 2023, to agree on an implementation framework.”

Meanwhile, the National Industrial Court of Nigeria in Abuja had earlier on Monday ordered the labour unions to call off its planned strike.

After hearing an ex parte request from the federal government, Olufunke Anuwe, the judge, issued the directive.

Being an ex parte hearing, it suggests that the labour representatives and their attorneys were not present.

The NLC and the TUC, the case’s respondents, were prohibited by the judge’s judgment from beginning the planned strike action, which was scheduled to start on Wednesday

Recall that on May 29, President Bola Tinubu announced the complete removal of fuel subsidy in his inauguration speech. He noted that the previous administration did not leave funding for subsidy and his administration will not fund subsidy as well.

Consequently, the Nigerian National Petroleum Company Limited (NNPCL) instructed its retail centres nationwide to sell petrol between N488 and N570 per litre an increase of about 200 percent from the initial price below N200.

The raise instantly resulted in percentage increases in the cost of products and services as well as transportation costs.

CEM reported that transportation fare shot by 100 per cent in most parts of Lagos.

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