Abuja, Nigeria – The Nigeria Labour Congress (NLC) has refuted claims of reaching an agreement with the Federal Government to cancel the impending indefinite strike scheduled for October 3.
In a statement released on Thursday, Benson Upah, the Head of Information and Public Affairs at NLC, stated that there was no formal agreement in place to halt the proposed strike action.
This announcement comes after the NLC and the Trade Union Congress (TUC) had jointly declared an indefinite strike during their National Executive Council meeting, to advance their demands.
Mr. Upah’s response was prompted by an alleged statement from Mr. Olajide Oshundun, Director of Press and Public Relations at the Ministry of Labour and Employment. Upah pointed out discrepancies in the statement, including inconsistencies related to the proposed strike and the alleged illegal occupation of the National Union of Road Transport Workers (NURTW) secretariat.
“Accordingly, we find it necessary to make clarifications. Firstly, we do not have any agreement with the government to suspend the planned strike action.
“Neither do we have any date for a meeting with the government that may lead to the suspension of the proposed strike.
“While we do not intend to demean or minimise the office of the Honourable Minister of Labour and Employment, this matter is beyond the Ministry.
“This should have been obvious to them during our most recent meeting,” he added.
He, therefore, commended the role played by the Minister of Labour and Employment, Simon Lalong in securing the release of the executives of the NURTW from unlawful, illegal police detention.
Mr Upah added: “We take exception to the ministry describing these executives as factional leaders.
“They were lawfully elected into office. We still find it necessary to advise the police and those elements behind their travails to desist from this despicable and shameful conduct.
“They are advised to retrace their steps. If democracy is to be of meaning to us, then we should resist the urge or temptation for impunity. Enough is enough.”
The NLC’s stance over the planned strike, set to begin on October 3, remains on track as they continue to negotiate with the government over their demands.
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