Sun. Jun 16th, 2024

By Ojukwu Emmanuel Chiadikaobi

 

The Federal Capital Territory Administration (FCTA) office, located on No. 1 Kapital Road, Area 11, Garki, Abuja, found itself at the center of the ongoing labour strike as workers, organized under the Joint Unions Action Committee (JUAC), barricaded the premises on Monday morning.

The FCTA Secretariat, home to key government officials including FCT Minister Nyesom Wike and Agriculture and Food Security counterpart Senator Abubakar Kyari, witnessed a scene of workers adhering to the strike action called by the Nigeria Labour Congress (NLC). As early as 8 a.m., employees had secured the gates and blockaded them with vehicles, effectively halting access to the office complex.

The timing of the action underscores the determination of the workers to press for their demands, particularly regarding the implementation of a new minimum wage. However, the Federal Government swiftly responded to the strike, denouncing it as “premature, ineffectual, and illegal.”

In a statement, government representatives pointed out several shortcomings in the Labour’s strike call, citing failure to meet statutory requirements and International Labour Organization (ILO) principles prior to initiating industrial action. Additionally, they highlighted the existence of a court order prohibiting Labour from embarking on a strike, which remains in force until formally vacated.

The standoff between the striking workers and the government underscores the broader tensions surrounding labour relations and wage negotiations in Nigeria. With neither side showing signs of backing down, the situation remains fluid, and stakeholders are closely monitoring developments for any potential resolution or escalation of the conflict.

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