The Nigerian Federal Government has issued a stern warning to the Nigerian Labour Congress (NLC) and the Trade Union Congress (TUC), urging them to reconsider their plan for a nationwide indefinite strike scheduled for October 3.
The government asserts that the proposed strike by these labor unions would constitute a blatant violation of a valid court injunction. It emphasizes that the matter concerning the removal of fuel subsidies, which triggered the NLC and TUC’s decision to call for a strike, is currently pending before the National Industrial Court (NIC).
The Federal Government points out that it withdrew its initial contempt proceeding against the unions because of their willingness to engage in negotiations regarding this issue. Therefore, the Attorney-General of the Federation and Minister of Justice, Prince Lateef Fagbemi (SAN), has written to Mr. Femi Falana (SAN), the head of the legal team representing the unions, urging him to persuade his clients to abandon their planned strike action.
In a letter dated September 26, a copy of which has been obtained by Vanguard, the Attorney-General’s office stated, “The attention of the Ministry has been drawn to media reports on the proposed nationwide strike action by the Nigerian Labour Congress, NLC, and Trade Union Congress, TUC, scheduled to commence on 3rd October 2023.
“You are kindly invited to recall the antecedence of previous steps/actions on this matter, particularly the exchange of correspondence between this office and your firm, before and after the nationwide ‘action/protest’ declared by the NLC on 2nd August 2023.
“While your clients had maintained that the nationwide protest by NLC is in furtherance of its constitutional right to embark on protests, the Ministry has repeatedly advised on the need to advise your clients to refrain from resorting to self-help and taking actions capable of undermining subsisting orders of a court of competent jurisdiction.
“It is also to be recalled that based on the conduct of the said nationwide action/protest, this Office instituted contempt proceedings against the labor leaders.”