Nigeria: Strike - Labour Cripples Govt., Banks, Schools' Operations in Lagos

The deserted Oregun Senior Secondary School.
27 September 2018

Government offices, banks and public schools were on Thursday closed in Lagos as the organised labour began its strike over delay by federal government in concluding negotiation on a new minimum wage.

The enforcement teams of the organised labour set out from Ikeja to the State Secretariat, Alausa, at about 7:20 am and workers who arrived for work were being turned back.

The News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) correspondents who went round the Lagos metropolis reported that the United Bank for Africa (UBA) on Lagos-Ibadan express way and Wema Bank in Alimosho were closed.

NAN reports that the enforcement team of the Association of Senior Staff of Banks, Insurance and Financial Institutions (ASSBIFI) led by its President, Oyinkan Olasanoye prevented staff from gaining access to Stanbic IBTC Bank, Ikeja branch.

The ASSBIFI team stormed Polaris Bank (former Skye Bank) on Awolowo Way, Ikeja, as its gate was locked by the union, while workers and customers were prevented from accessing the premises.

Mr Olasanoye said the enforcement was in compliance with the directive of the Trade Union Congress (TUC), which ASSBIFI was affiliated to.

She had on Wednesday at a news conference told journalists that ASSBIFI had dispatched letters to all its members in banks across the country, to join the strike.

However, Access Bank in Dopemu and First Bank in Iyana-Ipaja opened for business with many customers carrying out various transactions.

Meanwhile, fuel stations were seen attending to customers, while major roads, including Iyana-Ipaja to Ikeja and Ikorodu Road, were busy with the usual heavy traffic.

It will be recalled that labour demanded N65,000 national minimum, up from the current N18,000.

The wage was subject to negotiation by the 30-man tripartite National Minimum Wage Committee set up by the government in November 2017.

NAN reports that the Minister of Labour, Chris Ngige, said the tripartite committee would reconvene on October 4, 2018.

Mr Ngige said the meeting would enable the committee continue the negotiation, assuring that the current administration was labour-friendly and would pay the minimum wage once agreed upon.


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