Nigerian general strike enters second week

Johannes Schneider Johannes.Schneider at gmx.net
Mon Jul 7 01:56:23 MDT 2003


As I already indicated last Friday news about an end of the strike were
premature. The main development are:
- NLC ( the blue-collar union central) continues the strike and demands now
to restrict the fuel price raise to 32 Nairas.
- TUC (the white-collar union central) is satisfied with the government
offer to limit the fule price to 35 Nairas.
- Petroleum and Natural Gas Senior Staff Association of Nigeria (PENGASSAN,
TUC affiliated, white collar union) has called off any announced strike
actions.
- National Union of Petroleum and Natural Gas Workers (NUPENG, NLC
affiliated, blue collar union) supports the strike
- Eight TUC unions are still supporting the strike among them air transport,
electricity, construction workers, bank and insurance workers.

>From Lagos based This Day:

"Fuel Strike: Ignore TUC, Says Oshiomhole
[...]
By Mike Oduniyi, Tayo Ajakaye in Lagos, Juliana Taiwo and Onyebuchi Ezigbo
in Abuja
In an apparent reaction to the call for the end of the on-going strike
action in protest against the hike in the price of petroleum products by the
Trade Union Congress (TUC), the leadership of the Nigeria Labour Congress
(NLC) yesterday urged Nigerians, especially members of all industrial unions
and state councils of the congress, to continue with the strike.
The position of the NLC, which has received the support of the National
Union of Petroleum and Natural Gas Workers (NUPENG), however, differed from
that of the Petroleum and Natural Gas Senior Staff Association of Nigeria
(PENGASSAN) which has now aborted its planned disruption of oil production
expected to have commenced midnight yesterday.
Addressing a press conference yesterday in Abuja, the NLC President, Comrade
Adams Oshiomhole insisted that the strike must go on since the issues that
necessitated it in the first place are yet to be fully resolved.
Oshiomhole described the call by TUC as "self-serving made by individuals
who find it convenient to collude with the Nigeria National Petroleum
Corporation (NNPC), major marketers and other entrenched interests in the
oil sector at the expense of Nigerian people."
Oshiomhole assured that the NLC and its civil society allies would continue
to prosecute the strike with senior staff associations in the banking
sector, chemical sector, air transport, iron and steel, construction, pilots
union and others.
Oshiomhole said, reports available to NLC revealed that many affiliates of
the TUC, "which understand that their loyalty is to the Nigerian workers,
Nigerian people and the Nigerian nation, have dissociated themselves from
that NNPC-induced pronouncement."
[...]
The NLC President while calling on all stakeholders including students,
market men and women, transporters and others not to "relent in this last
phase of the struggle," said TUC was never part of the strike from the
beginning.
[...]
Eight of the affiliates to TUC pulled out of the body over allegation of
betrayal by the congress leadership.
Among the affiliates that pulled out and vowed to sustain the strike today
include Air Transport, Electricity, Statutory Corpor-ations, Construction
Workers, Chemical and Non Metallic, Iron and Steel, Bank and Insurance
workers.
The associations said that they were disturbed that the TUC had to abandon
NLC at this crucial time, when every Nigeria was speaking with one voice.
" Let it be known that from today we shall have nothing to do with Shina
Luwoye and a few of his boys until they retract their utterances. Failure to
do this amounts to our complete withdrawal from the congress until such a
time that a new leadership emerged," the associations said
At the Labour House yesterday over 30 human rights organisation met with the
leadership of the NLC to work out details of of how to continue with the
strike.
The organisations under the umbrella body of United Action for Democracy
(UAD) renewed their commitment to mass protest, affirming that they would
lead the protest at 7 am in Yaba, Lagos

Full:
http://www.thisdayonline.com/news/20030707news01.html

See as well:
http://news.bbc.co.uk/2/hi/africa/3048134.stm

Idiotic CNN is still reporting a 'strike deal':
http://edition.cnn.com/2003/WORLD/africa/07/06/nigeria.strike.deal/index.htm
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