Friday, 5 April 2013
NLC Declares One-day Strike In Lagos, Abuja
Business activities would be paralysed in Lagos State and the Federal Capital Territory (FCT), Abuja, respectively, as the Nigeria Labour Congress (NLC) has directed workers in the affected states to observe a work-free day on April 10 in solidarity with the Nigerian pensioners.
THISDAY learnt that the directive was issued by the NLC through a circular to its affiliates directing that national rallies be held in the state and Abuja simultaneously on the said date in support of the struggles of the Nigeria Union of Pensioners (NUP).
Already all affiliate unions and state councils across the country have begun mobilising workers in the affected states and the civil society groups to ensure a successful rallies.
The congress, while calling on members to actively participate in the rallies urged them not to forget that “an active worker today is a pensioner tomorrow” while reminding them of the slogan that “an injury to one is injury to all.”
NLC President, Mr. Abdulwaheed Omar, had earlier explained that the decision to embark on an industrial action was informed by the continued silence of the federal government over the plight of pensioners in the country.
The Central Working Committee (CWC) comprising presidents and general secretaries of affiliate unions of the congress had decried the growing level of corruption in the country and the crisis in the pension industry, stating that all efforts to get the attention of government including two letters to the presidency for intervention over the hardship faced by the nation’s senior citizens were fruitless.
The committee had expressed concern that despite the unprecedented scam in the pension regime and the raging war of words between the executive and the National Assembly, pensioners remain the main victims with a large number of pensioners not being paid their entitlements.
It lamented that the congress had exploited all the lawful channels of communication to the government hence its determination to ensure justice for its members who are owed billions of naira of pension arrears.
“The congress had written at least two letters to the presidency calling for its intervention in the pension crisis; coupled with the correspondences, the leadership of congress had reached out through other channels to the federal government; the congress leadership had also made public pronouncements on the avoidable, but painful pension crisis. The CWC noted with dismay that the Presidency neither acknowledged the letters nor responded to the issues the leadership of the congress publicly raised on the plight of pensioners. Convinced that the congress had exploited all the lawful channels of communication to the government to no avail, concerned that despite the unprecedented scam in the pension regime and the raging war of words between the executive and the National Assembly, pensioners remain the main victims with a teeming number of pensioners not being paid, congress is certain that nobody wants to listen to the plight of pensioners.
Worried that the continued silence of the government means more hardship for its members in the fold of the National Union of Pensioners, NUP, and determined to ensure justice for its members who are owed billions of pension arrears, the CWC resolved that on Wednesday, April 10, 2013, all NLC affiliate unions and state councils across the length and breadth of the country will mobilise workers on a protest march to the presidency and state government houses.