Unions Commence Nationwide Strike Over Minimum Wage Dispute [UPDATED]

Unions Commence Nationwide Strike Over Minimum Wage Dispute [UPDATED]

Several unions have shut down their workplaces in response to the directive from the Nigeria Labour Congress (NLC) and the Trade Union Congress (TUC) to initiate an indefinite nationwide strike.

On Friday, the organized labour announced the commencement of the strike due to the Federal Government’s refusal to increase the proposed minimum wage from N60,000.

Joe Ajaero, President of the NLC, declared that the strike would begin at midnight on Sunday, June 2, 2024.

In a joint statement, Ajaero and TUC President Festus Osifo expressed serious concerns and disappointment over the Federal Government’s failure to finalize and pass a new National Minimum Wage Act. They also demanded the reversal of the electricity tariff hike to N65/kWh.

Both unions had set an ultimatum of May 31, 2024, for the government to conclude negotiations on the new minimum wage.

Negotiations between organized labour and the Federal Government broke down on Tuesday after both parties presented their offers. The government raised its initial offer from N57,000 to N60,000, but this was rejected by labour.

During the negotiations, labour also adjusted their demand, reducing it from N497,000 to N494,000.

In response to the strike directive, the Academic Staff Union of Universities (ASUU) instructed its members to join the strike. ASUU President Emmanuel Osodeke directed university lecturers nationwide to participate as an affiliate of the NLC.

The ASUU statement read, “The NLC has declared an indefinite strike action beginning from Monday, June 3, 2024, due to the government’s failure to conclude the renegotiation of the minimum wage for Nigerian workers and reverse the hike in electricity tariff.”

On Sunday, aviation unions also directed their members to withdraw services across Nigerian airports. These unions include the National Union of Air Transport Employees, the Air Transport Services Senior Staff Association of Nigeria, the Association of Nigerian Aviation Professionals, and the National Association of Aircraft Pilots and Engineers.

The unions stated, “In compliance with the directive from the Nigeria Labour Congress and Trade Union Congress of Nigeria, we hereby inform the general public, aviation service providers, airline operators, aviation businesses, and all aviation workers nationwide that starting from 0000hrs of June 3, 2024, all services at all Nigerian airports shall be fully withdrawn till further notice.”

The decision was made following an emergency meeting held on Sunday.

Unions Joining the Strike:

  1. The Academic Staff Union of Universities
  2. Maritime Workers’ Union of Nigeria
  3. The National Union of Electricity Employees
  4. National Union of Banks, Insurance and Financial Institutions Employees
  5. Judiciary Staff Union of Nigeria
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