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Strike: You don’t obey court orders- Labour knocks FG
 
By: Abara Blessing Oluchi
Wed, 15 Nov 2023   ||   Nigeria,
 

With the nationwide industrial action declared by the Nigeria Labour Congress (NLC) and the Trade Union Congress (TUC) entering the second day, the Organised Labour has said that no court order was received from the Federal Government or any of its parties not to proceed with the strike which commenced on Tuesday.

TUC President Festus Osifo, who spoke on Channels Television’s Sunrise Daily programme on Wednesday, knocked the government for “perpetually violating” court orders while expecting other institutions to obey the judiciary.

Osifo recalled that the Federal Government and the Department of State Services (DSS) violated court orders directing the release of former Governor of the Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN), Godwin Emefiele, from the custody of the secret police when he was detained before he was eventually freed after about five months.

“Yes, we don’t have a service on the court order but we have a government today who perpetually does not obey court orders. When DSS was holding Emefiele, how many court orders were passed for Emefiele to be released? Countless number of them,” a furious Osifo said on our breakfast show.

The labour leader further said once the unions receive a court order on the ongoing strike, they would liaise with their lawyers and take a decision.

“We have a state that refuses to obey court orders. You now expect others to obey court orders but once we see it, we are responsible institutions, we will not say because the Federal Government continuously violate court institution, we will examine it and if it is the right thing for us to do, yes, we will.”

The Presidency and the Office of the Attorney General of the Federation had berated Labour for embarking on the indefinite action despite a “restraining order issued last week by Justice Benedict Backwash Kanyip of the National Industrial Court”, saying labour must respect court orders.

Labour embarked on nationwide strike on Tuesday to seek justice over an assault on NLC President, Joe Ajaero, in Owerri, the Imo State capital, on November 1, 2023 when he was about to lead a protest against alleged anti-labour practices by the Governor Hope Uzodimma-led administration.

Workers in several states joined the strike, shutting down activities at several government-owned facilities.

Public schools, state High Courts and State Houses of Assembly were shut while some banks in capital cities closed their doors to customers, who were left to do their transactions at the ATM terminals.

However, in some states, partial compliance trailed the industrial action as some workers continue their normal operations.

 

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