The Federal Government has described as “premature, ineffectual and illegal” Labour’s strike call over the new minimum wage, which begins today.
It said Organised Labour failed to meet all statutory requirements and International Labour Organisation (ILO) principles before the declaration of industrial action.

It also said there is a subsisting court order precluding Labour from embarking on strike, which is yet to be vacated.

The government, through the Attorney-General of the Federation (AGF) and Minister of Justice Lateef Fagbemi (SAN), listed sections 41(1) and 42(1) of the Trade Disputes Act 2004 (as amended) which requires labour to give a 15-day prior strike notice before embarking on a strike and Section 31(6) of the Trade Unions Act (as amended) as some of the laws.

Fagbemi, in a letter yesterday to the two labour centres – the Nigeria Labour Congress (NLC) and Trade Union Congress (TUC) – pointed out that the unions did not take “recourse to conciliation, meditation, and (voluntary) arbitration procedures” as outlined by the ILO before declaring the strike.

He consequently appealed to the NLC and TUC to reconsider their positions because of the negative effects the strike would have on the citizenry and the economy.

Also yesterday, the National Assembly said it would engage the parties to the dispute (Federal Government, states, and the private sector) “in constructive dialogue and explore a variety of solutions in addressing the issues at hand.”

The NLC and TUC on Friday directed their affiliate unions to mobilise for the strike to register their displeasure over the outcome of Thursday’s meeting by the wage committee.

June 3, 2024

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