By Sabiu Abdullahi
The Nigeria Labour Congress (NLC) and the Trade Union Congress of Nigeria (TUC) have announced a nationwide strike scheduled for Wednesday, November 8, 2023.
The joint union’s decision stems from the alleged beating and abduction of their President, Joe Ajaero, during a protest in Imo State’s capital.
Leaders of the NLC and TUC have issued a six-point demand to the Federal Government, calling for the immediate removal of the Commissioner of Police, Imo State, and the Area Commander, among other officials, accused of complicity in the brutalization and abduction of Ajaero and other workers.
Reports indicate that Ajaero was taken away by the police during a protest against the non-payment of workers by the Imo State Government.
The NLC, in a strongly worded statement, accused Imo State Governor, Hope Uzodimma, of conspiring with the state’s Commissioner of Police, Muhammed Barde, to abduct Ajaero.
The unions condemned what they described as the state government’s use of violence and intimidation against trade unions and their leadership, emphasizing that their only demand was the payment of overdue salaries to state workers.
In response, the state’s Police Command and Governor Uzodimma vehemently denied the allegations, with the police claiming that Ajaero was in Warri, organizing labourers for a planned protest demonstration in the state.
The governor’s spokesperson, Declan Emelumba, dismissed the accusations, labeling the accusers as “mischief makers.” The NLC and TUC, however, remain steadfast in their demand for Ajaero’s release and have called for the intervention of President Bola Tinubu.