Wednesday, May 19, 2021

Kaduna Shutdown: FG Intervenes As El-Rufai, Labour Stick To Their Guns


The federal government said it will wade into the labour impasse currently rocking Kaduna State following commencement of 5-day warning strike by organised labour in the state, which on Tuesday took a violent turn.
The Minister of Labour and Employment, Dr Chris Ngige, said the government will invite labour leaders for a dialogue while calling on the Kaduna Governor, Mallam Nasiru El-Rufai to also extend the olive branch.
Thugs on Tuesday disrupted the peaceful procession of the Nigeria Labour Congress (NLC) and affiliated unions in Kaduna, after pelting the protesters who had converged at the NEPA roundabout in the city centre.

The labour activists were in the streets as part of the second day of 5-day warning strike to protest the mass sack of workers in the state when they came under attack.
Security agents were forced to use teargas and shot severally in the air to disperse the thugs. The workers were also forced to retreat.
The Kaduna State Government came under attack over attack on the unionists with the Nigeria Union of Petroleum and Natural Gas Workers (NUPENG) threatening to shut down all of its facilities nationwide if any of the labour leaders are hurt.
It was that the day had started amidst palpable tension following a tweet by Governor El-Rufai, declaring the NLC President, Ayuba Wabba and other union leaders wanted for economic sabotage and attack on public infrastructure.
According to El-Rufai, a “handsome reward” awaits anyone who knows where the labour leader was hiding and sends a message to the Kaduna State Ministry of Justice.
However, less than two hours after the tweet, the governor came within 100 meters of the union leaders when Wabba led a large procession to the Sir Kashim Ibrahim House had lingered at the NEPA roundabout where the governor’s siren blaring convoy passed beside them.
The governor’s convoy passed beside the protesters to the nearby gates of the headquarters of Kaduna Electricity Distribution Company, about 100 from the NLC members.
The gates of the distribution company were quickly opened and the governor’s convoy moved in. Ten minutes later, El-Rufai’s convoy emerged from the premises of Kaduna electric and left through an opposite route avoiding the protesters who were still at the NEPA roundabout.

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