NLC, TUC suspend strike for further negotiations

The nationwide indefinite strike initiated by the Nigeria Labour Congress (NLC) and Trade Union Congress (TUC) in protest against the brutalization of NLC president, Joe Ajaero, in Imo State on November 1, 2023, has been temporarily suspended.

This decision, reached at an emergency joint National Executive Council (NEC) meeting in Abuja, aims to facilitate further negotiations on the underlying issues that triggered the strike.The suspension follows the intervention of the federal government, notably through the National Security Adviser (NSA), Mallam Nuhu Ribadu.

The NSA personally apologized for the attack on Joe Ajaero and assured the labor leaders that suspects had been apprehended, with detailed investigations underway.

The government emphasized its commitment to preventing such acts of violence in the future.During the meeting, concerns were raised about the impact of the strike on the fragile economy and national security.

The government, acknowledging the effectiveness of the strike, expressed a desire to avoid its continuation. However, labor leaders criticized the Minister of Labour for not intervening earlier and highlighted the importance of their right to strike as recognized by international labor conventions.President of the Trade Union Congress, Festus Osifo, mentioned that the NSA made promises and appeals for the strike to be called off, and discussions would be taken back to their respective organizations for further consideration.

The Minister of Labour and Employment, Mr. Simon Lalong, characterized the discussions as fruitful and ongoing, expressing hope for a swift resolution. Despite this optimism, the national leadership of the NLC has outlined six conditions that must be met before fully suspending the strike.

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These include the arrest and prosecution of those involved in the attack on Joe Ajaero, emphasizing accountability for the Special Adviser to the Imo governor on special duties and other individuals implicated in the violence.

While the strike has been temporarily suspended, the final resolution awaits the fulfillment of specific conditions outlined by the NLC, reflecting the ongoing dialogue between labor and the government.

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