Tag Archives: Strike

Just in: Lagos State Doctors begin warning strike

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Doctors employed by the Lagos State Government will on Monday begin a three-day warning strike.

The Chairman of the Medical Guild, Lagos, Dr Oluwajimi Sodipo, at a briefing on Sunday, said the doctors were embarking on the strike after the ultimatum given to the Lagos State Government had expired.

He said, “Following the emergency congress of the Medical Guild held on June 27, we resolved that the previous 21 days ultimatum given to the state government be extended by a further two weeks during which representative council meeting should be held to review the resolutions of the congress and activate the three-day warning strike if 70 per cent of the Guild’s demands are not met.”

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Sodipo said the demands of the Guild include the wage disparity between the federal and Lagos doctors.

“The issues of COVID-19 hazard allowance and inducement allowances MOU approved by the federal government to her doctors have not been approved by the Lagos State Government to her doctors.

“The doctors working in the COVID-19 isolation centres are still being owed two months’ salaries which have remained unpaid at the moment. They are also being unceremoniously disengaged without recourse to their welfare.

“The issue of shortage of doctors in the health facilities are yet to be resolved and with no substantive action taken by the state government t resolve the issue,” Sodipo said.


#Newsworthy…

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Cross Rivers: NLC begins indefinite strike.

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Government activities were paralysed in offices in Cross River State Monday following the indefinite strike embarked upon by the Nigeria Labour Congress.

The state chapter of the NLC led by Comrade Benedict Ukpepi had declared an indefinite strike over nonpayment of pension, gratuities, removal of names of civil servants from payroll implementation of promotion, among others.

Some agencies and offices rendered skeletal services and their workers closed early.

At the new secretariat on Murtala Mohammed Highway in Calabar, a team of NLC officials, policemen, and other security agencies were seen enforcing compliance.

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The NLC chairman said, “The strike is successful. The few staff at the New Secretariat are mostly members of Trade Union Congress who cannot work without our members.”

Some offices were also shut at the Old Secretariat when newsmen visited the place in the morning.

There was confusion initially over the strike as the TUC pulled out of the industrial action, citing wrong timing amid the COVID-19 pandemic.


#Newsworthy

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Oil Workers suspend proposed strike. | Details

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A planned three-day strike by the Petroleum and Natural Gas Senior Staff Association of Nigeria (PENGASSAN) and the Nigeria Union of Petroleum and Natural Gas workers (NUGENG) has been called off.

According to the General Secretary of PENGASSAN, Lumumba Okugbawa, the strike action that was to commence today (Wednesday) was called off due to the intervention of the Minister of State for Petroleum Resources, Timpre Sylva.

In a memo to all PENGASSAN and NUPENG affiliate chapters and branches across the country, the unions said: “The matter has been apprehended and discussions ongoing with the Honourable Minister of State for Petroleum Resources.”

The strike action was called by the joint National Executive Committee of PENGASSAN and NUPENG on Sunday to protest alleged forceful enrolment of the oil workers into what they referred to as defective payment platform (the lntegrated Payroll and Personnel Information System (lPPlS)” by the federal government.

According to the unions, the strike action was called to press home demands for the payment of salaries of their members working with federal government agencies, whose salaries had been withheld since May over their failure to enroll on IPPIS payment platform.


#Newsworthy…

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Nigerian Govt send legal threats to NARD.

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The Federal government has threatened to take action against any resident doctor on its payroll who fails to resume work today, June 17.

Recall that NARD had embarked on a nationwide strike on Monday due to the Federal Government’s failure to meet demands made by the association.

A negotiation meeting convened by the Minister of Labour and Employment, Chris Ngige with the Minister of Health, Osagie Ehanire, and the leadership of the Resident doctors, ended in a deadlock on Tuesday after many hours of deliberation.

Ngige, during the meeting, stated that health workers are the essential frontline officers during the coronavirus pandemic and have suffered great mishaps across the country.

According to him, the major issues have been taken care of, while other minor issues will also be taken care of.

He said “We have paid those allowances since last night and it was directly paid into the account of recipients.

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“We are also hopeful that between the IPPIS office and the Central Bank, that before 24 hours they would all be credited for April and May.

“The payment wasn’t made for only Resident Doctors, but also for consultants, nurses, pharmacists, physiologist, mortuary attendants, ICU centers, and all health care workers in coronavirus designated hospitals and all Federal Medical Centres in designate states.

“We assumed that these issues have been settled because IPPIS has shown evidence.

“We have also agreed on matters that are in court, that we should step them down so that we do not enter areas that are in the purviews of the court.

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“Also, on the issue of group life insurance and the employee compensation, they have been paid and we have equally said that they have no right to make claim for the resident doctors or any other health workers that must have had a mishap in the cause of work resulting in death.

“For those who do not die or have mishap or accidents in the cause of their work but became incapacitated, they can always make claims through the Employee Compensation Act, which the Federal Government have already activated.

”The appropriation for residence program has been captured in the 2021 budget and would roll over from 2020,” he said.

Also, Dr. Ehanire Osagie, while speaking said that Nigeria was the first country in the world where doctors went on strike during a global pandemic.

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“The health of Nigerians is very important at this crucial time and we will ensure that the lives of Nigerians are protected, therefore, we will not allow our hospitals to be fallow.

“At this point, the health workforce is essential services and we have pleaded and have equally done everything to meet the demands that are being made by them.

“We at the Ministry of Health are ready to protect the lives of Nigerians, and we are not going to allow our hospitals to do otherwise.

“The resident doctors have told us that they are not returning to work very soon until certain conditions are met and truth be told, they cannot keep extending the goal post any time they like.

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”So, Wednesday morning, those who report to work will be taken as those who are still in service, and the register will be taken and closed at 12 noon and by then we will know who wants to still be in service,” Ehanire said.

However, the doctors refused to return to the meeting after a recess was taken.

NRM gather that the National President, Dr. Aliyu Sokomba while speaking with newsmen, said that the doctors would only call off the ongoing action within 24 hours if the government brings something tangible to the table.

“This is the only way that the strike can be ended within 24 hours,” he said


#Newsworthy…

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FG, Doctors’ Meeting to halt proposed strike ends with no ‘Hope’

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The meeting between the Federal Government delegation and the National Association of Resident Doctors on Tuesday ended in a deadlock.

The striking doctors refused to reconvene after a brief recess and their president, Dr Aliyu Sokomba, told Channels Television that they are not ready to shift position until their demands are met.

However, the Minister of Labour and Employment, Dr. Chris Ngige insists that the meeting was successful, as most of the demands are being resolved

He later noted that the representatives of the striking doctors have informed them that their members do not agree with the resolutions from the meeting so far, and as such cannot call off the strike until some tangible evidence of commitment from the government is received.

Also speaking, the Minister of Health says the government has the obligation to protect the health of citizens, and since the doctors are not ready to resume, certain steps must be taken.

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He also noted that a circular has been sent out to all government hospitals to open a register from Wednesday, to take note of doctors that will resume for work.

The register closes by 12:00 pm.

This comes days after the doctors embarked on an indefinite nationwide strike.

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According to Sokomba, the union took the decision to go on strike as a result of the failed series of meetings between the doctors and the Federal Government in the last two weeks.

He said the meetings have failed to resolve the lingering industrial disputes which include the non-payment of special allowances for the resident doctors.

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He also decried the deplorable state of hospitals and the lack of protective equipment for members of the union treating COVID-19 patients.

Dr Sokomba added that this has exposed many of their colleagues to coronavirus and resulted in the death of some of them.


#Newsworthy…

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14 Days Strike Notice Sent to Nigerian Govt.


Nigerian doctors would embark on an indefinite strike if the Federal Government failed to address their demands within 14 days.

The Nigerian Association of Resident Doctors (NARD) stated this on Saturday in a communique issued at the end of its virtual 40th Ordinary General Meeting (OGM) and Scientific Conference.

The communique was signed by NARD National President, Dr Sokomba Aliyu and Publicity Secretary, Dr Egbogu Stanley.

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The NARD 40th OGM was held under the theme: ‘Health inequalities and social determinants of Health in Nigeria.’

The virtual OGM, attended by 74 Chapters of the association from across the country, deliberated on issues affecting the nation’s health care system and welfare of its members.

“NARD calls on the Federal and State governments to provide adequate personnel protective equipment such as N95 respirators, gloves etc. to all health workers.

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“NARD also demands immediate recall of the sacked resident doctors at Jos University Teaching Hospital and payments of their salaries.”

According to the association, 26 resident doctors at the Jos University Teaching Hospital were illegally disengaged without recourse to the law governing Residency training.

“The association also demands for universal implementation of the Residency Training Act in both Federal and State Teaching hospitals.

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“NARD demands immediate implementation of the revised hazard allowance, and payment of COVID-19 inducement allowance,” the communique said.

“OGM resolves that urgent steps be taken to ensure that the fate of our members at the State Tertiary Health Institutions be improved through engagement with the various state governments and relevant stakeholders.

The association enjoined the Federal Government through the National Assembly to ensure full capture of the residency training funding in the 2021 Appropriation Act.

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It also demanded for payment of arrears of the consequential adjustment of the new minimum wage to its members at both Federal and state tertiary health institutions.

The Association condemned what it called “the illegal deductions in salaries” of members by some state governments and demanded for immediate refund.

“NARD observes the slashing of salaries of our members at state tertiary health institutions with particular reference to Kaduna state government that cut the salaries of health workers by twenty five percent.”

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It also called on security agencies especially in Lagos, Delta and Abuja to stop the harassment and assault of doctors while carrying out their legitimate activities.

“OGM observes non implementation of the revised hazard allowance, the non procurement of life insurance, non-payment of the death benefits claims and COVID-19 inducement allowance of doctors in various health institutions.

“NARD observes non-payment of arrears of the consequential adjustment of new minimum wage to some of her members.

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It also observed with concern, the non-implementation of revised CONMESS and skipping arrears by some state governments in various state tertiary teaching hospitals.

The NARD noted the shortage of medical staff especially resident doctors in most health institutions across the country and called on the government to address the problem.


#Newsworthy…

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Breaking: Gbajabiamila plead with Abuja health workers to extend strike ultimatum. [Nigeria]


The Speaker of the House of Representatives, Hon. Femi Gbajabiamila, has appealed to the Joint Health Sector Union and the Assembly of Healthcare Professionals (JOHESU), FCT Chapter, to extend the strike ultimatum they gave to the FCT Administration.

The JOHESU had on May 7, given the government up to May 28 to address the irregularities in salary payment since January, non-payment of arrears of promotion from 2016, 2017 and 2018, delay in the release of conversion and proper placement of some of the workers, in order to avert workers’ strike.

But Gbajabiamila, at a meeting with the officials of the union at the National Assembly, Abuja, yesterday, pleaded with the health workers to tarry a while on the issue and assured them that the House would deliberate on the matter at plenary on Tuesday, May 19, 2020, (today) and come up with a strong resolution.

Read Also;

Infectious diseases bill: Gbajabiamila faces impeachment threat. [Nigeria]

He also hinted that the House would meet with the officials from the FCTA, the Federal Ministry of Finance, the Budget Office and IPPIS officials to ensure that all issues were resolved with immediate effect.

Responding, the Chairman of JOHESU, FCT Chapter, Ms. Deborah Yusufu, commended the Speaker for his intervention, which showed that he recognised the sacrifices health workers are making in the fight against COVID-19.

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Yusufu said she would take the Speaker’s position back to her union.

The meeting was attended by the Deputy Chief Whip, Hon. Nkeiruka Onyejeocha; Minority Leader, Hon. Ndudi Elumelu; Deputy Minority Leader, Hon. Toby Okechukwu; Chairman House Committee on Healthcare Services, Hon. Tanko Sununu and the JOHESU officials.


#Newsworthy…

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COVID-19: Why we are on strike – ASUU


The Academic Staff Union of Universities says it ordered its members, who are lecturers across universities, to embark on strike during the coronavirus pandemic because there would never be a time approved for such an action.

Professor Biodun Ogunyemi, the President, Academic Staff Union of Universities, on Tuesday, also launched ASUU COVID-19 intervention in an effort to sensitise the public and check the spread of the dreaded virus at the University of Ibadan.


The intervention materials, produced by the UI branch of ASUU, comprised about 1,000 100ml of hand sanitisers. The programme included sensitisation campaign, via jingles in Pidgin and English languages; posters in three languages and hand gloves.

Ogunyemi, who was represented on the occasion by the coordinator of ASUU, UI zone, Prof. Ade Adejumo, said, “We cannot confront the challenge by bemoaning our fate. What is expected is that we join forces to do what China and other well-organised societies have done to flatten the curve.


“ASUU acknowledges that public information, education and communication are key. To demonstrate our concerns for the welfare and well-being of the Nigerian people, ASUU members nationwide shall be willing to work with medical and paramedical workers as volunteers in their public enlightenment and professional intervention initiatives.

“All branches shall explore areas of strategic collaboration with federal, state and local governments to provide support in terms of information and expert skills drawn from our members across the nation. For us in ASUU, this is not an occasion for blame game or buck passing. However, it calls for sober reflection on what we need to do differently with our health and education.”

Ogunyemi said the coronavirus crisis had exposed the country’s “naked and empty teaching hospitals” which justified its industrial action to demand revitalisation funds for public universities.

He, however, said the union would be willing to serve as volunteers nationwide in the coronavirus crisis to work with the medical and paramedical workers involved in tackling the scourge.


#Newsworthy…

JUST IN: ASUU commences indefinite strike.


ASUU President, Professor Abiodun Ogunyemi says the strike became necessary after the Federal Government ignored issues raised by the association.

Members of the Academic Staff Union of Universities (ASUU) has embarked on indefinite strike action.


The announcement was made by the President of Association, Professor Abiodun Ogunyemi in Abuja, on Monday.

He explained that the action became necessary following the Federal Government’s refusal to address issues raised in its 2019 Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) as well as its objection to joining the Integrated Pay Roll and Personnel Information System (IPPIS)

The industrial action takes effect today, March 23rd.


#Newsworthy…

ASUP lecturers give 15 days ultimatum as they may strike.


The Academic Staff Union of Polytechnics on Thursday gave the Federal Government 15 days ultimatum for it to honour all pending agreements reached with it or risk industrial action.

Addressing the press after the union’s 97th National Executive Committee meeting at the Federal Polytechnic, Ede, Osun State, ASUP President, Anderson Ezeibe, said members would embark on strike unless the Federal Government implemented agreement reached with it and meet its other demands.


He also demanded urgent steps to rectify irregularities that accompanied payment of February salary to its members through Integrated Personnel Payroll Information System.

According to him, victimisation of many ASUP officials that participated in lawful struggle had continued unabated, adding that seven lecturers of the Institute of Management Technology, Enugu, and the Rufus Giwa Polytechnic, Owo, had been dismissed for participating in union activities, while two others from Yaba College of Technology were suspended.

“Based on these which epitomise neglect, disregard and disrespect to the sector; coupled with the insincerity of the government in respecting signed agreements entered into with our union, the union is hereby issuing a 15-day ultimatum to resolve these pending issues affecting the sector or face industrial action by our union without the benefit of any other warning,” Ezeibe added.


#Newsworthy…

ASUU strike continues after meeting with FG fails.


The federal government and the Academic Staff Union of Universities (ASUU), on Tuesday, progressed in their negotiations to end the ongoing two weeks warning strike by the lecturers.

However, the strike continues as ASUU said it would have to take the proposals to its members for review and possible approval.

Neither party provided elaborate details of the agreement.

However, the labour minister, Chris Ngige, said the government had tabled a new proposal regarding the agreement on the Integrated Payroll Personal Information System (IPPIS).

The meeting which started 3:30 p.m. ended at about 11:01 pm.

The two-week warning strike which the union declared would elapse on Monday next week.

ASUU declared the strike over the non-payment of salaries of their members who failed to enrol into the federal government’s IPPIS, a payroll software mandated for all public officials.

The government last Thursday also reached an interim agreement with striking university lecturers to integrate the University Transparency and Accountability Solution (UTAS) into the IPPIS.

The IPPIS is the government’s accountability software that has been made compulsory for all public institutions, mainly for personnel payroll.

ASUU is opposed to the use of IPPIS for lecturers saying it does not consider some of the peculiar operations of universities. The lecturers’ union then developed its own UTAS which it wants the government to adopt for universities.

Speaking after the meeting, Mr Ngige said the issues discussed ranged from funding, revitalisation of public universities, earned academic allowances and salaries shortfalls.

“Issue of IPPIS was also discussed and options and solutions were advanced. Government has a proposal which had been given to ASUU. ASUU will take these issues that are outstanding back to its National Executive Council for them to be on the same page before they get back to the government. We have agreed that a tentative date to get back to the government is before the weekend runs out. We expect ASUU to write government before then to see if there will be a need for a further meeting,” he said.

According to Mr Ngige, they also addressed payment of earned academic allowances to the University of Ilorin.

On the Nigerian University Pension Management Company (NUPEMCO), a certificate was issued last year but operational certificate had not been issued because we do not have a permanent PENCOM board in place, he said.

He said the government has made a proposal on how the NUPEMCO board will be able to fulfil its obligation especially in terms of preparation of annual audit reports.

“Issue of visitation panel to the universities has been on the table since last year. Government side made progress in that approval has been gotten and we are waiting for the gazette of the membership of the visitation panels,” he said.

Also speaking, the ASUU President, Biodun Ogunyemi, said both parties have improved on where they stopped in the previous meeting.

He said the government has made “concrete proposals to our members but as we usually say, “those of us here cannot make a final pronouncement on any of the proposals.”

”We have assured the government team that we will report to our principals and get back. We want to assure Nigerians that we are concerned with going back to our work because that is where we are happiest. We are not happy staying outside the classrooms, laboratories and laboratories. We will do our best to ensure that all concerned have the maximum benefit from this action because it is of national interest. If academics don’t defend the universities, who will defend the academics?”

~Trend~

In the 19 years since Nigeria returned to civil rule after years of military dictatorship, university teachers in the country have embarked on strike 14 times that saw them stay away from work for about 40 months.

The last strike by the teachers was in November 2018.

ASUU has been locked in a protracted dispute with the Nigerian government over issues of poor funding of public universities. Every time the dispute boiled over to strike by the teachers, negotiations between the two parties always produced agreements.

However, the government’s failure to meet the teachers’ expectations within the context of the agreements have been a primary reason ASUU has been on strike almost every year since 1999


#Newsworthy…

COVID-19: Nigerian doctors go on indefinite strike.


The Association of Resident Doctors (ARD), Abuja chapter, have announced they would be embarking on an indefinite strike beginning from today March 17th, amidst the Coronavirus pandemic.

Rising from an emergency meeting this morning, the doctors in a statement released by its president, Roland Aigbovo, said they deliberated extensively on the health threat posed by the coronavirus scare, their work conditions, and patient care before arriving at the “difficult decision to go on an indefinite strike.


According to the aggrieved doctors, the decision to embark on the strike at this time is due to the failure of the FCT administration to pay them their basic salaries for more than two months.

According to Aigbovo, there has been salary irregularities and shortfalls since the migration to the Integrated Personnel and Payroll Information System by the FCTA.

This decision comes hours after a third case of Coronavirus was confirmed in Lagos state.


#Newsworthy…

Nationwide strike continues for this reason – ASUU.


The ongoing two-week warning strike embarked upon by the Academic Staff Union of University (ASUU) continues as the Federal Government gave conditions to integrate the University Transparency Accountability Solution (UTAS) being proposed by the Union into the government’s Integrated Payroll and Personnel Information System (IPPIS).

The Minister of Labour and Employment, Dr. Chris Ngige, revealed this on Thursday after a four-hour technical session between both parties.


The meeting ended at 7:30pm. However, both the federal government and ASUU teams did not reveal the terms of conditions reached during the meeting.

The two parties are expected to reconvene next Monday or Tuesday after further consultations by both parties.


Meanwhile, ASUU President, Prof. Biodun Ogunyemi, in his remarks, said the National Executive Committee of the union would review the conditions set for the integration of UTAS into the IPPIS, a decision based on the commitment of the Federal Government.

Daily Trust reports that the Union had on Monday declared a two-week warning strike over non-payment of salaries of lecturers who failed to enrolled in the Federal Government’s Integrated Personnel and Payroll Information System (IPPIS).


This is coming a day after the government through the Labour minister, Dr Ngige, described the ongoing ASUU warning strike as “illegal.”

It could be recalled that the House of Representatives had also on Wednesday resolved to intervene in the ongoing ASUU strike.

The House also invited Ministers of Education as well as that of Labour and Employment on the issue.


#Newsworthy…

UNILORIN embark on ASUU strike – 1st time in 20 years.


The University of Ilorin (UNILORIN) has embarked on strike action alongside the Academic Staff Union of Universities (ASUU), disrupting its calendar for the first time in 20 years.

On Monday, ASUU had commenced a two-week warning strike to compel the federal government to implement its 2019 agreement and resolution with the union.


On Tuesday, Moyosore Ajao, ASUU chairman in UNILORIN, told TheCable Lifestyle that the institution would abide by the union’s directive, in a move that compromises on the stability of its academic calendar.

“What has the FG done to compensate UNILORIN lecturers during those times when we never went on strike? It’s not as if we’re getting anything extra for not joining our colleagues,” he said.


“Government should be held responsible for this. This is March 10 and we’ve not even received our salaries. These are the collateral damages that result when issues come up between ASUU and FG.”

Calls placed to current students of varsity revealed that the institution will be temporarily discontinuing ongoing exams for its 100 and 200 level students over the next two weeks.

In 2019, ASUU had reached an agreement with the federal government to end a protracted strike action among universities — after more than three months of halting academic activities.

But President Mohammadu Buhari would later issue a directive, threatening to stop salaries of its members if they failed to enroll in the Integrated Payroll Personnel Information System (IPPIS).


#Newsworthy..

Check: ASUU begin 2 weeks warning strike.


The Academic Staff Union of Universities, ASUU, has embarked on a two- week warning strike with effect from Monday.

The National President of the union, Professor Biodun Ogunyemi, made the announcement at end of the National Executive Council meeting(NEC) held at the Enugu State University of Science and Technology (ESUT).

Ogunyemi said the strike action was to compel federal government to implement the agreements and resolutions of Memorandum of Action discussed in the 2009 ASUU-FGN agreement, the 2013 Memorandum of Understanding (MOU) and the 2017 Memorandum of Action (MoU), all of which have not been implemented.


#Newsworthy…

National Blackout: Electricity workers threatens strike ..


Nigeria might witness another blackout as electricity workers have threatened to go on strike if government fails to implement the December 11, 2019 agreement it reached with them.

The workers, under the aegis of National Union of Electricity Employees, have issued a 14-day ultimatum to government.


There was a national blackout weeks ago as a result of the strike over a breakdown in negotiation between the electricity workers and government.

The union’s grievances include unpaid benefits to over 2,000 disengaged workers of the defunct Power Holding Company of Nigeria since 2013; underpayment of over 50,000 ex-PHCN staff; payment of half salaries to workers by the power distribution companies, among other perceived unfair labour practices.

Addressing journalists on Wednesday in Lagos at the NUEE headquarters in Yaba, General Secretary, Joe Ajaero accused the Minister of State for Power, Goddy Agba, of harassment and intimidation during the union’s negotiation on challenges affecting workers in the sector.

The union leader said if issues were not addressed at the end of the ultimatum, the country should hold the minister responsible for the result of such action.


#Newsworthy…

Gombe government repel strike action over minimum wage.

…Deputy to lead negotiation committee

The Governor of Gombe State, Muhammadu Inuwa Yahaya, has repelled a strike action about to be taken by organised labour in the state, naming his deputy, Dr Manassah Daniel Jatau, to lead a 15-member committee to negotiate the implementation of the newly signed national minimum wage and the consequential adjustments in the state.

It was earlier rumored on Tuesday in Gombe metropolis that the state chapter of the Nigeria Labor Congress (NLC) and other labour union had commenced mobilization to embark on a warning strike to draw the attention of the state government on the need for the implementation of the new minimum wage and its consequential adjustments.

However, according to Ismaila Uba Misilli, the senior media aide to Governor Yahaya, the Governor approved the constitution of the negotiation committee and that a memo issued by the state head of civil service, Alhaji Bappayo Yahaya, indicates that the committee was mandated to look into the possibility of implementation of the new minimum wage: “As it affects the Core Civil Servants and others in the state. It is also to determine the consequential adjustments for Core Civil Servants on GL. 07-17 and others.”

He said while the committee is mandated to co-opt more members deemed suitable for the successful conduct of the assignment, members approved for the committee by the state governor include: the Chairman, Deputy Governor Manassah Daniel Jatau, Alhaji Ibrahim Dasuki Jalo, the Commissioner, Ministry for Local Governments and Chieftaincy Affairs; Mohammed Gambo Magaji, Commissioner, Ministry of Finance; Dr Ishiaku Mohammed, Special Adviser (SA) to the Governor on Budget, Planning and Development Partners Coordination; Yusuf Daudu Kaltungo, Director General, Bureau of Public Service Reform and Zainab Abdulkadir Rasheed, Permanent Secretary/Solicitor General, Ministry of Justice.

Misili reveals that other members are: “Muhammad Buba, State Auditor General; Aliyu Mahdi Mele, Auditor General for Local Government; Mohammed Seyoji Jibril, Permanent Secretary, Establishment and Service Matters Department and Umar Babagoro Bello, Permanent Secretary/Accountant General.

Also to serve on the committee are Mohammed Manu Malala, Permanent Secretary, and Local Government Service Commission; Joint Public Service Negotiation Council (JNC); Representative of Federal Ministry of Labour and Productivity; Dr. James Madi, Director, Hospital Services while Barr. Caleb Ubale, Special Adviser, Legal Matters will serve as Secretary,” Misili stated in a statement issued on Christmas Eve.

#Newsworthy…

Just in – ASUU says there is no going back on rejection platform.

…dares FG

Academic Staff Union of Universities (ASUU) has insisted that it is not going back on its determination to reject the planned enrollment of its members on Integrated Personnel and Payroll Information System (IPPIS) by the Federal government.

ASUU’s President, Prof. Biodun Ogunyemi who stated this in a chat with newsmen after an interaction with its members at the Federal University of Agriculture, Makurdi (FUAM) on Friday accused the federal government of trying, through IPPIS, to over-localize Nigerian universities and take them back to the core civil service.

“What IPPIS is out to do is to take universities back to the core civil service. We fought that under the military way back in 1992. In fact, the first law that led to autonomy that we are talking about was signed 1993. Our negotiations with federal government since 1992 has always had this component of any circular that is inconsistent with the university autonomy to the extent of its inconsistency will be null and void.

“So, that is to clear the line between the core civil service and universities. The universities are meant to be governed by their laws. The Head of Service is not the employer of universities academic staff.

“In fact, under the military, they sacked some of our senior comrades. People like late Prof. Iyayi and the thing was tested in court. The then Head of State, a military president gave directive that Iyayi should be sacked and that matter was taken up to the Supreme Court and he defeated the military government.

“And government pronounced at the Supreme Court that governing councils are the employers of universities academics. So, to that extent, we are convinced that we are on the right track.

“The employers of universities academics are their governing councils and not the Head of Service. Universities are not part of civil service and there is no where in the world where such practice as they are trying to impose on us in Nigeria obtains.

“And we have sited this example before. Ghana at some point, introduced IPPIS but later they excluded the universities because they know it would not work.

“What they (FG) are trying to do in Nigeria is to over-localize us (ASUU) but universities are international learning and research environments. We are now in the age of internationalization. That is why people talk about global ranking of universities, they don’t talk of local ranking of universities.

“It would be an anathema for us to allow government to over localize us. To buy into IPPIS means we are surrendering the autonomy of the universities which is highly cherished all over the world.”

Asked what would happen if the federal government makes good its promise to stop salaries of universities lecturers who refuse to enroll on the IPPIS scheme, the ASUU President said the union would have no other option than to activate it’s resolution on ‘no salary no work’.

He said the information making the rounds that some of its members were secretly enrolling on the IPPIS is not totally correct stressing that the number of its members who may have betrayed its cause was very insignificant.

“The information making the rounds is not totally correct about the number of our members who are betraying the cause of ASUU. I can tell you authoritatively that in this branch (ASUU-FUAM), those who have registered against the wish of the Union are less than 15.

“If you have over 700 members in a branch and you have less than 15 going against the wish of the Union, we can say the number is insignificant. But more importantly, our union has a way of handling matters like that when you work again the directive of the Union.

“We have our own procedure of handling matters by taking them through the procedure for handling disciplinary issues. And that is what we are going to do in this matter.

#Newsworthy…

Chris Ngige shade PHCN, says they can’t suffer Nigeria.

… says more investigations will be carried out

The Minister of Labour and Employment, Chris Ngige has revealed that the recent strike embarked on by electricity workers centered on a power tussle between National Union of Electricity Employees (NUEE) and the Senior Staff Association of Electricity and Allied Companies (SSAEAC).

The Minister who disclosed this on Channels Television Lunchtime Politics, said the strike action the electricity workers embarked upon over non-payment of a severance package for members who were affected by the unbundling of Power Holding Company of Nigeria PHCN into eleven electricity distribution companies (DisCos), six generating companies (GenCos), and a transmission company (TCN), caused the country billions of Naira and loss of lives.

Ngige also stated that he warned members of the unions against doing anything that will affect the nation adversely. He affirmed that more investigation will be carried out and relevant labour laws will be invoked on any of the union found wanting.

He said;

“My initial investigation as the Minister of Labour is that there is a power-play between NUEE and the Senior Staff Association of Electricity Workers who are domiciled there.

“There is a power struggle on who is senior and who is more potent in terms of effecting unionism and they have carried this on and inflicted the whole country with a power outage that has caused us billions of naira and loss of lives; it is unfair and I have told them not to do that.

“The unions are not ‘Omni-Sacrosanct’ that we can’t do anything to them, we will look at the issue and if they are liable, I will invoke the relevant sections of the labour act on that.

“The preliminary investigation shows that there is a power play, and they cannot use power play to punish the entire nation and make us lose man-hours, billions of naira and lose lives in hospitals that their generators are not working.”

On the dispute between the Ministry of Power, Distribution Companies (DisCos) and Generating companies (GenCos), the Labour minister blamed the electricity workers for the strike action while insisting that the rule of law must be obeyed.

He added;

“The rule of law is not for the government alone, it is for the citizens too. There are set laws for people to apply in industrial relations and all are encapsulated in the trade dispute act.

“Before somebody on essential service, of which electricity workers are one, can proceed on industrial action; you must notify your direct employers first and the onus is on them to convene a meeting, they then approach the labour ministry, the labour minister is there, that’s my work and they give the ultimatum and there are special forms called the ‘Trade Dispute forms’ which they fill and lodge in the Ministry; all that was not done.

“They just had issues with their direct employers which are the Ministry of Power, the DisCos which is mostly privatized with the government having just 40 percent while the investors have 60 percent.”

Ngige averred that the issue is between the DisCos and GenCos, with the Federal Government being involved in only the severance package.

“Some of the problems are in the DisCos, the GenCos and some with the government. The Government side of the problem is where they said that some of the people that were severed when those parastatals were privatized have not been paid off.

“The statistics are there and it is only about 600 persons that their cases are outstanding and out of those, 400 have been captured and sent to the Accountant-General of the Federation because what had happened is that all the monies gathered from the sales of privatization were expended in terms of the severance benefits and other allowances that were due to the workers that had to leave those DisCos and GenCos, so 98 percent of the money went in there.

“Shortfall in salaries is a continuous thing and is being addressed and it’s not even a government thing, it is with the DisCos,” he stressed.

#Newsworthy…

Electricity – PHCN workers suspend Nationwide strike.

The National Union of Electricity Employees (NUEE) has announced the suspension of its strike embarked upon on Wednesday. The strike was meant to draw the Federal Government’s attention to the plight of its members.

Speaking after the Union’s meeting with officials of the Federal Government, National President of NUEE, Joe Ajaero said the association has resolved to call off the one-day old strike action.

He said the workers’ grievances were addressed during the deliberation between the Union and delegation of the government. The meeting which started last night lasted till early today.

“We have concluded deliberations and all issues were addressed but we are awaiting implementation,” he said.

“Meanwhile, our strike action is suspended.”

Following the expiration of the 21-day ultimatum issued by NUEE to the Minister of Power, Saleh Mamman, to implement their demands, and the failure of the Minister to dialogue with the Union before the ultimatum which lapsed midnight Tuesday, a nationwide blackout was imminent as electricity workers began indefinite strike Wednesday morning.

#Newsworthy…

Breaking – Reps Calls Power Ministers As Electricity Workers Go On Strike

Leadership of the House of Representatives is set to meet with the Minister of Labour, Employment and Productivity, Chris Ngige and Minister of Power Saleh Mamman.

This is in a bid to avert the planned strike by the National Union of Electricity Employees (NUEE).

The House made the resolution on Wednesday, following a motion of urgent public importance raised by the House Deputy Minority Leader, Toby Okechukwu.

The lawmakers expressed worry that if the strike is not averted, there will be economic consequences.

The House then resolved to call the Ministers of Power and Labor to ensure the issues with the generating companies are settled without degenerating into a nationwide strike that will cause total blackout with resultant effect on the socio-economic conditions of the people

Electricity union had earlier issued a 21-day ultimatum to the Minister of Power for a dialogue to resolve the lingering industrial crisis in the sector.

Some of the unresolved issues are illegal transfer of union properties to power investors and the alleged refusal by some distribution companies (discos) to remit deducted contributory pension of their members of staff to pension managers.

#Newsworthy…