Attempts to avert the impending strike by organised Labour over the unresolved matters between members of the National Union of Electricity Employees and Federal Government has failed.
At a meeting held at the Ministry of Labour and Productivity yesterday in Abuja, in the absence of the Minister of Power, Barth Nnaji as well as officials of the Power Holding Company of Nigeria (PHCN), the Nigeria Labour Congress (NLC) said it would not engage in further negotiation with government until it withdraws soldiers deployed in the premises of the Power Holding Company of Nigeria (PHCN).
The meeting between the Federal Government and the organized Labour called by the Minister of Labour and Productivity, Emeka Wogu was originally scheduled to begin by 2pm but did not start until about 3:45 pm.
It was attended by the Deputy President of the NLC who is also the General Secretary of NUEE Joe Ajaero, NLC’s Head of Administration, Emmanuel Ogbuaja and Secretary General of the Trade Union Congress (TUC) John Kolawole. The participants went into a closed session after a brief remarks by both parties.
Minister of Labour, Emeka Wogu, had during his introductory remarks, said the meeting was in response to the strike notice given by the Nigeria Labour Congress (NLC) at the end of its National Executive Council (NEC) meeting last week in Benin, the capital of Edo State.
He said it was the duty of the ministry to discuss with the parties involved in the dispute to stop the labour union from embarking on the planned strike at the expiration of the one week ultimatum given if the issue remained unresolved.
But the organized labour said that the labour minister lacked the capacity to negotiate and resolve with it, without the minister of power and others. Stakeholders in the crisis were not present at the crucial meeting to save the country from the impact of the looming strike.