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NLC, TUC Set For Massive Protests May 31 | Citizen NewsNG

ByCitizen NewsNG

May 21, 2024

NLC and TUC Protest




The Nigeria Labour Congress (NLC) and the Trade Union Congress of Nigeria (TUC) have given President Bola Tinubu’s administration until May 31, 2024, to conclude a new minimum wage for civil servants and to reverse the recent hike in electricity tariffs, or face massive protests.

Following a joint National Executive Council (NEC) meeting in Abuja on Monday, both labor unions issued the ultimatum in a resolution signed by NLC President Joe Ajaero and TUC leader Festus Osifo. They threatened to mobilize a massive protest if their demands were not met by the deadline.

The joint statement from the unions highlighted pressing national issues affecting Nigerian workers, including the recent hike in electricity tariffs, the ongoing negotiation of a new national minimum wage with the Federal Government of Nigeria, and the persistent non-compliance with the 2019 National Minimum Wage Act by some state governments.

The unions criticized the government for failing to comply with the 2019 National Minimum Wage Act, which mandates constituting the Tripartite National Minimum Wage Negotiating Committee at least six months before the expiration of the current wage agreement.

They accused the government of deliberate delays in negotiations, compelling the NLC and TUC to set the May 31 deadline for finalizing the new minimum wage process.

“The NEC-in-session, therefore, reiterates the ultimatum issued by the NLC and TUC to the federal government, which expires on the last day of this month. It emphasizes the non-negotiable nature of the demands put forth by Nigerian workers and urges the government to prioritize the resolution of these issues in the best interest of industrial peace,” the statement insisted.

The NEC also directed “all state Councils whose state Governments are yet to fully implement the N30,000 (Thirty-thousand Naira) National Minimum Wage and its consequential adjustments to issue immediately a joint two-week ultimatum to the culpable state Governments to avert industrial action.

“In the event that the government fails to meet the demands outlined within the stipulated time frame, the NEC authorizes the leadership of the NLC and TUC to take appropriate actions, including but not limited to the mobilization of workers for peaceful protests and industrial actions, to press home these demands for social justice and workers’ rights.”

The unions recalled that they had previously embarked on a one-day nationwide picketing of all National Electricity Regulatory Commission (NERC) offices and DISCOs to protest the illegal hike in electricity tariffs, demanding its reversal, but without the desired result.

Condemning the tariff hike, the NEC stated that the increase, made without considering the economic hardships faced by the masses and the provisions of the law, is unjust and burdensome.

“The NEC reaffirms its demands for an immediate reversal of the tariff hike and the vexatious apartheid categorization into Bands to alleviate the suffering of Nigerian workers and citizens and gives the National Electricity Regulatory Commission (NERC) and the federal government until the last day of May 2024 to meet these demands,” both unions warned.

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