Unusual things are going on in the dispute on gas price increment, including divisions that are showing up along ethnic and religious lines AND a dusting up of a strange “Trade Dispute Act” that all but cancels workers’ right to protest.
Pockets of resistance to the strike are also surfacing from labor’s ranks in addition to write-ups in print and online commentaries. Meanwhile, the union representing oil and gas workers AND Electricity workers have stated they are against any strike action.
In Nigeria, governments have always been able to have its way against workers’ interest and since the “subsidy” scam started two presidents back, workers have been betrayed often in what words in the streets are of union leaders being bought. During Jonathan’s presidency, there were outrageous stories of union leaders being paid with overseas real estate!
Whatever the cause of oil & gas’ NUPENG, for example, backing out of a strike action, it remains to be seen how government will move from this initial strong-arm tactic.
If market women, artisans, commercial drivers, housewives, for example, move into the streets, is government going to order shoot-at-sight since it has no leverage to use with such groups?
Caution and reasonable process are needed before people get killed for protesting what they see as unjust system.
“We have resolved to go ahead with the protest nationwide, as far as we are concerned, we are yet to be aware of any court injunction,” he said.
“And if there is any court injunction, we are just doing what federal government is fond of doing. The same Industrial court had stopped federal government from increasing electric tariff but till date federal government ignored us, they still went ahead, so we are embarking on the protest.” – LABOR on why its’ call for a strike is still on [saharareporters.com]
All workers, whether in public or private sector are further reminded of the Trade Dispute Act, 2004, which provides that “where any worker takes part in a strike, he shall not be entitled to any wages or remuneration for the period of the strike and any such period shall not count for the purpose of reckoning the period of continuous employment and all rights dependent on continuity of employment shall be prejudicially affected accordingly.”
NIGERIAN GOVERNMENT’S THREAT [premiumtimesng.com]
WEDNESDAY, MAY 18, 2016. 4:57 a.m. [GMT]