June 15, 2024

The leadership of the Nigeria Labour Congress (NLC) and the Trade Union Congress of Nigeria (TUC) are set to meet with President Bola Tinubu’s team on Tuesday.

Joe Ajaero, the NLC President, disclosed this on Monday while featuring on a Channels Television programme, Politics Today.

Mr Ajaero said the protest was suspended after the intervention of the National Assembly and the president of the Federal Republic of Nigeria, President Bola Tinubu, adding that between that time and now, one or two issues have played out.

“The Senate promised to get back to us and resolve the matter within one week. Just this evening we got a notice from them inviting us for a meeting tomorrow,” Mr Ajaero said.

“Another issue is we are yet to get the modality on the restructure initiative team, especially the government, and for those that will lead the government team, that one is still pending.

“However, rising from our NEC meeting, we decided to take further action against the position of the industrial court and Ministry of Justice through the solicitor general that we are sending us letters about contempt, you know, and the NEC of the NLC rose giving to 14th of August for them to withdraw such summon for contempt or face industrial action. Real industrial action.”

The NLC president added that the Ministry of Justice, through the solicitor general of the federation, sent a letter to the union withdrawing its charges.

“So far so good that’s where we are,” he said.

Protests

On 29 May, during his inauguration, President Tinubu announced the removal of subsidy on petrol. This development has caused hardship for many Nigerians with its attendant increase in the prices of goods and services.

Last Wednesday, the NLC and TUC led Nigerian workers in protests across the country over the increasing cost of living due to government policies, especially the removal of subsidies on petrol.

PREMIUM TIMES reported how the nationwide protest called by the two labour unions was held in various state capitals. The Abuja protest was led by NLC President Joe Ajaero and TUC President Festus Osifo.

The Abuja protesters marched from the Unity Fountain to the National Assembly complex, where they were addressed by a senator, Ali Ndume, who promised that the Senate would intervene in the crisis.

However, after the conclusion of the Abuja rally, the leaders of the two labour unions met with Mr Tinubu.

At the end of the meeting, Mr Ajaero told journalists that “the issues we discussed are the same issues that led to the protest today.”

“He (President Tinubu) has expressed his position, made some commitment, which were taken side-by-side with what the Senate said, and we’re taking it back to the office with our colleagues to review it and release a document on our next line of action.”

Shortly afterwards, presidential spokesperson Dele Alake released a statement announcing that the NLC had agreed to call off the protests.

“Consequent upon the fruitful and frank discussion with President Tinubu and their confidence in his ability to encourage open and honest consideration of all the issues put forward by the Labour Movement, the Labour Leaders resolved to stop further protest,” Mr Alake wrote.

Mr Alake said the president promised the union leaders that one of Nigeria’s four refineries would commence operations by the end of this year.

“President Tinubu gave his commitment to the Labour leaders that the Port Harcourt refineries will start production by December 2023 after the completion of the ongoing rehabilitation contract between NNPCL and Italian firm Maire Tecnimont SpA,” he wrote.

 

PREMIUM TIMES

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