Why Shutdown Of Electricity Nationwide Will Continue – Workers
As the nationwide shutdown of electricity continues, the striking workers of the Transmission Company of Nigeria, (TCN) have defended their action.
The strike by the workers under the aegis of the National Union of Electricity Employees (NUEE) was triggered by the directive of the TCN Board that all principal managers who are in acting capacity must undergo promotion interviews.
The impact of the strike began unfolding at 10:00 a.m. on Wednesday when the grid dropped from 4,149 Megawatts recorded at 6:00 a.m. to 2,600MW. The grid capacity continued to drop as more workers at transmission stations downed tools.
It fell further to 939.4MW at 3:00 p.m. and finally recorded zero generation at 4:00 p.m.
The protesting workers blocked the entrance to the Transmission Company of Nigeria, TCN, headquarters building in Abuja.
READ ALSO: Nationwide Blackout Begins As Grid Collapses
The building houses the Federal Ministry of Power where the Minister of Power and the Minister of State, Power have their offices. Their action locked out staff of the ministry as well as both ministers and their aides.
NUEE General Secretary, Joe Ajaero had in the letter calling out the workers for strike said the directive for the promotion interview was in contravention of the workers’ condition of service and career progression path.
He said it was unilaterally done without the relevant stakeholders.
NUEE also decried the “stigmatization of staff from the office of the Head Service of the Federation from working in other areas in the power sector.
“Refusal of the Market Operator to fund the payment of entitlement of ex-PHCN staff as agreed in December 2019 agreement after an industrial action by the union”.
The strike went on as planned despite the intervention of the Minister of State Power, Goddy Jedy-Agba who had appealed for a two weeks grace to allow the government address the issues raised by the workers.
It also followed the reversal of the TCN Board on the promotion interview directive.
The FCT Branch Chairman of NUEE, Godfrey Abah said the action would continue until their demands were met by the government and the TCN management.
Abah noted that though the workers were not happy that the nation had been left without electricity supply, he said the embarrassment was to the Federal Government.
“As citizens and as a labour union we want supply to be everywhere but you know that the only weapon we have is to withdraw our service and that is what we have done. We have withdrawn our service to enable the government to attend to our needs and do what is right.
“The ball is in the court of the government and they know what to do. We have just received an invitation for tomorrow (Thursday) and before the close of business today we will know if the meeting will be held. We are ready for the negotiation”.
Also, the Zonal Organising Secretary of NUEE (Liaison), Engr. Ayodele Kolade said that workers would remain on strike until the issues were resolved.
READ ALSO: World Bank Asked To Release Details Of Spending On Nigeria’s Electricity
“The government is aware of our decision to embark on this strike action. As you can see no one is working and everybody has gone home. There is no light anywhere in Abuja and Nigeria as a whole and it will continue until our demands are met. Failure to do this Abuja and Nigeria will be in blackout”, he stated
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BREAKING: PDP Suspends Anyim, Fayose
Former governor of Ekiti State, Ayodele Fayose; former president of the Senate, Pius Anyim; Prof Dennis Ityavyar and Aslam Aliyu were on Thursday suspended from the Peoples’ Democratic Party (PDP).
The PDP made the suspension on Thursday after an extensive review of the affairs of the party, pursuant to the provisions of the PDP Constitution (as amended in 2017).
The PDP also referred the Governor of Benue State, Samuel Ortom, to the National Disciplinary Committee over his reported involvement in anti-party activities.
This was disclosed in a statement signed by the National Publicity Secretary, Debo Ologunagba.
“The PDP urges all leaders, critical stakeholders and teeming members of our party across the country to remain united and focused at this critical time,” the statement added.
BREAKING: Ekweremadu, Wife Found Guilty Of Organ-trafficking In UK
A United Kingdom court has found former Deputy Senate President, Senator Ike Ekweremadu, 60, his wife Beatrice, 56, and Dr Obinna Obeta, 50, guilty of an organ-trafficking plot, which saw them bring a 21-year-old man to the UK
They were convicted of conspiring to exploit the man from Lagos for his kidney, reports the BBC.
Prosecutors told the Old Bailey the organ was to be removed and given to the couple’s daughter, Sonia, aged 25.
She was cleared of the same charge.
The victim, a street trader from Lagos, was brought to the UK last year to provide a kidney in an £80,000 private transplant at the Royal Free Hospital in London.
They were later arrested at the airport while trying to leave the UK.
NLC Orders Workers To Shut CBN Offices Nationwide Over Naira Scarcity
Worried about the continued scarcity of naira, the Nigeria Labour Congress (NLC) has officially declared a nationwide . The national president of the union, Joe Ajaero, gave the directive during a media briefing in Abuja.
Ajaero also directed that affiliate unions constituting the NLC should be on standby for picketing exercises across all branches of the Central Bank of Nigeria nationwide.
The NLC earlier issued a seven-day ultimatum to the Federal Government to end the petrol and cash scarcity being experienced in the country.
Ajaero told journalists on Wednesday that the industrial action became the last resort of the NLC following the expiration of the ultimatum.
He said the decision to picket the CBN branches became necessary as the federal government and the CBN had failed to show any commitment to addressing the situation.
Ajaero lamented that despite the Supreme Court order that the old N200, N500 and N1000 notes remain legal tender until December 31, 2023, the situation kept getting worse.
He said workers could not access cash to pay fares to work.
He also criticised the pricing irregularities in the petroleum sector.
“Last week, we gave an ultimatum for the review of the cash crunch bedevilling the country, but we have discovered to our dismay that as at this moment not much effort has been made to ameliorate the situation. Government is still foot-dragging on these issues we raised,” Ajaero said.
“Based on this, we met again this morning to review our position and resolved that by Wednesday next week all CBN branches will be picketed. Workers are directed to stay at home too because people cannot eat, workers can no longer go to the office, we have been pushed to the wall.
“We have decided to take our destiny in our hands, we have mobilised our workers on this exercise.”
The NLC has no fewer than 43 affiliate unions which include, but not limited to, the Academic Staff Union of Universities, the Nigeria Union of Pensioners, and the National Union of Road Transport Workers.
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