Wednesday, December 11, 2019

Black Out hits Nigeria as Electricity workers begin Nationwide strike

The National Union of Electricity Employees Start it nationwide strike after several warning to the minister of power, Saleh Mamman which expired midnight on Tuesday, 11th December 2019.

According to the statement released by the assistant secretary general, Anthony Sule, the 21-day ultimatum expires at midnight Tuesday.

He said the federal government failed to look into issues affecting the sector for lasting dialogue. Anthony said the union doesn't have any choice than to embark on the strike.

“The ministry of power has failed to resolve some issues affecting members of the union since 2013 when the power sector was privatised especially issues that with the over 2,000 disengaged former PHCN workers and their pay off, ” the statement read.

“Some of the unresolved issues are illegal transfer of union properties to power investors and the alleged refusal by some distribution companies (DisCos) to remit deducted contributory pension of their members of staff to pension managers.

Secretary of NUEE, Joe Jaeto, said it was “regrettable” that the ministry failed to respond to the strike notice.

He added that the union has given more than enough time for dialogue on the issues between the federal government but that nothing is forthcoming from the government.

He said letters were delivered to all the channels of relevant authorities in the power sector, including security agencies to inform them of their intention.

“I can assure you, the strike will commence any time from now,” he said.

The union, in a memo dated November 7 and sent to the minister, warned that it will declare a nationwide strike if its demands were not met.

“Unpaid benefits to over 2000 disengaged staff of the defunct Power Holding Company, PHCN, since 2013; underpayment of over 50,000 ex-PHCN staff; payment of half salaries to workers by DISCOs, among other perceived unfair Labour practices,” the memo read.

“The following issues cutting across all facets of the sector are hereby highlighted for your information and necessary action. The problems created by Bureau for Public Enterprises, BPE, are BPE’s refusal to address and pay up over 2,000 disengaged Ex-PHCN staff since 2013.”

“Unfortunately, letters to your office since assumption of duty are not acknowledged.

“Consequently, we use this medium to place your esteemed office on notice that we may not continue to guarantee industrial peace, if these issues are not addressed within 21 days. This is not a threat.”