Workers’ Strike: We’re Ready For You, El-Rufai Tells NLC, PDP

Total blackout as TCN knocks off all 33kva lines
Government to take attendance
Aviation workers block Kaduna Airport
Ahead of the five-day warning strike directed by the
Nigeria Labour Congress (NLC) scheduled to
commence today in Kaduna, Governor Nasir El-Rufai
says he is ready and will wait for the union leaders
and the opposition Peoples’ Democratic Party.
Daily Trust reports that the Transmission Company of
Nigeria had since midnight of Saturday knocked off
all the 33KV lines in the state, leaving residents in
darkness. This followed an earlier warning by the
National Union of Electricity Employees that it had
been directed by the NLC to join the warning strike.
It was gathered that many civil servants had decided
to boycott the strike today following a warning by the
state government that attendance would be taken.
El-Rufai had on Saturday said his government would
not bow to blackmail, insisting that it was not
sustainable to spend 84 to 96 percent of its federal
allocation on salaries and personnel costs.
The state government had noted that it had been
subjected to campaign of lies, misrepresentation and
false claims that its rightsizing exercise affected
4,000 workers and that it had stopped paying the
minimum wage.
Daily Trust reports that at least 14 affiliates of the
NLC from the aviation, petroleum, banking, health and
transport sectors have expressed their readiness to
comply with the strike.
NLC President, Ayuba Wabba and other leaders of the
union arrived Kaduna yesterday for close-door
meeting.
However, reacting to the PDP Vanguard which made
a statement on Twitter that a ‘mother of all labour
strikes’ would take place in Kaduna, El-Rufai
described the NLC and the PDP as “fathers of all
hypocrites”, stressing that Kaduna would wait for
them.
He tweeted: “FATHERS OF ALL HYPOCRITES: Kaduna
will wait for you all – the invisible PDP & affiliates like
the hypocritical NLC that is yet to implement the
National Minimum Wage Act, 2019 for its own
employees.”
Fuel queues build ahead of workers’ strike
Meanwhile, Residents of Kaduna have resorted to
panic buying of petroleum ahead of today’s five-day
warning strike directed by the NLC.
The Nigeria Union of Petroleum and Natural Gas
Workers (NUPENG) had earlier directed all petroleum
tanker drivers to withdraw services to Kaduna State
for five-days.
Our correspondent observed that queues were
building at fuel stations within Kaduna metropolis as
motorists tried to fill their vehicle tanks and other
containers for domestic use.
Salisu Ibrahim, who lives in Badiko, said he was on a
queue for almost an hour to fuel his tank and a
25litre can for his generator at home.
“The TCN has already commenced its own strike
even ahead of Labour,” he said, adding that: “There
was power outage sometimes around 12 midnight on
Saturday and we have been without electricity since
then, so one will need enough fuel to ensure that
perishable items in the fridge do not spoil.”
He said he had also rushed to a POS point to make
withdrawals as he was sure that ATM points will also
become overcrowded as the days go by.
Aviation workers block Kaduna Airport, says no
going back
Aviation workers said yesterday there was no going
back on shutting down the Kaduna International
Airport in compliance with the directive of the NLC.
The workers comprising the National Union of Air
Transport Employees (NUATE), Association of
Nigerian Aviation Professionals (ANAP) and the
National Association of Aircraft Pilots and Engineers
(NAAPE) had earlier issued a joint notice to join the
one-week strike.
In a letter dated 14th May 2021 to the Managing
Director of the Federal Airports Authority of Nigeria
(FAAN), the aviation unions informed that they would
proceed on the action in compliance with the NLC
directive with effect from midnight of Sunday, the
16th of May, 2021 to midnight of Friday the 21st of
May.
Speaking with our correspondent yesterday, General
Secretary of NUATE, Ochem Aba, said the Kaduna
Airport would be shut down by 7 p.m.
“We are currently at Mando and from there we would
go in convoy to shut down the gate of the airport.
There is no going back. All the authorities have been
duly informed,” he said in a telephone chat with our
correspondent.
Daily Trust reports that Air Peace is currently the only
airline that flies to Kaduna. It was learnt that the
airline has been duly informed about the industrial
action. As of the time of filing this report, the airline
had closed booking on its website for Kaduna flight.
Apart from the scheduled commercial flight, other
private charter operations in and out of Kaduna state
would be affected.
A labour leader and former General Secretary of
NUATE, Olayinka Abioye, said the action by the NLC
“is long overdue.”
“It is good that the labour movement is converging
on Kaduna to deal with him. How can a governor
wake up to say you are sacking people to say you are
doing review? I am fully in support of the action of
the labour movement. It is long overdue,” he added.

2 Replies to “Workers’ Strike: We’re Ready For You, El-Rufai Tells NLC, PDP”

Leave a Reply