Blackout, fuel scarcity, transport disruptions imminent as unions mobilise for total compliance


By Adebari Oguntoye

There are indications that Nigerians may be in for hard times beginning on Monday, June 3, as a result of the indefinite strike action declared by Organised Labour.


Specifically, there may be nationwide power outages, fuel scarcity, and transportation disruptions, just as the nation’s seaports, schools, and hospitals, among other important government agencies and parastatals, may be put under lock.

This is because all affiliates of both trade unions, the Nigeria Labour Congress (NLC) and the Trade Union Congress of Nigeria (TUC), have commenced mobilisation for total compliance with the planned strike.

In a notice of indefinite nationwide strike to all its affiliates on Saturday, the General Secretary of NLC, Emmanuel Ugboaja, enjoined them to mobilise all members for total compliance with the directive on industrial action.

While urging all affiliates to ensure a comprehensive closure of all workplaces, he noted that the success of the action was dependent on members’ collective determination and resolve.

In the same vein, circulars issued by affiliate unions on Saturday, directed members across the nation to ensure full compliance with the NLC and TUC directives.

Circulars from the Maritime Workers Union of Nigeria (MWUN), the Association of Senior Staff of Banks, Insurance and Financial Institutions (ASSBIFI), the Senior Staff Association of Nigerian Universities (SSANU), Judiciary Staff Union of Nigeria (JUSUN), National Union of Electricity Employees (NUEE), the Nigeria Union of Petroleum and Natural Gas Workers (NUPENG), the Nigeria Civil Service Union (NCSU), the Nigeria Union of Railway Workers (NUR), and the Association of Nigeria Aviation Professionals (ANAP), all urged their members to totally comply with the strike directive.

For instance, a notice of indefinite strike by the MWUN directed its members in all ports nationwide, including jetties, terminals, and oil and gas platforms, to effectively ensure total compliance with the strike as directed by the NLC and TUC.

John Ikemefuna, who is the Head, Media, MWUN, said in a statement that the indefinite nationwide strike had become imperative, considering the failure of the Federal Government in the inconclusive national minimum wage negotiation as well as its refusal to reverse the hike in electricity tariff.

Similarly, NUEE’s acting general secretary, Dominic Igwebike, urged members to stop work in the early hours of Sunday.

NUPENG also called on its members to withdraw their services, raising fears of a possible fuel scarcity across the nation.

The General Secretary, NUPENG, Afolabi Olawale, said the union was deeply concerned and disturbed by the insensitive attitude of the Federal Government to the issue of negotiating a new minimum wage for Nigerian workers given the various socio-economic policies of the current administration that have impoverished the people.

Meanwhile, it was gathered that the Minister of Power, Adebayo Adelabu, has invited Labour to a meeting on Monday in a bid to avert a nationwide strike in the electricity sector.


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