By Joan Nwagwu
Abuja, Sept. 4, 2023
The Federal Government has appealed for a period of two weeks to finalise on organised labour’s demands.
Mr. Simon Lalong said this while addressing newsmen at the end of a closed door meeting with the Trade Union Congress(TUC) on Monday in Abuja.
Lalong said the meeting was called to avert the proposed nationwide warning strike by the Nigeria Labour Congress (NLC).
It would be recall that the NLC had said that it would embark on a two-day nationwide warning strike from Sept. 5 to Sept. 6 over hardship faced by the masses due to the removal of fuel subsidy.
The News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) reports that the NLC were absent at the meeting called by the minister.
The Federal Government had earlier appealed to NLC to suspend the proposed 2-day nationwide warning strike.
Also, the TUC in a communique had said the need to embark on strike had not arisen but would allow conversation with government to address grey areas.
According to Lalong, government is going to address those issues within the period of two weeks and come back for further discussion.
“Some of the issues we discussed are those that are very urgent. There are some that will require a long span of time. This was the basis of our discussion.
“We agreed that there should be no strike within the two-week period while we are doing our deliberations and working towards realising some of these objectives,” he said.
Also, Mr. Festus Osifo, the President of TUC, said some of the issues requiring urgent attention included implementation of palliatives and wage award.
He said others are tax exemptions and allowances to public sector workers; modalities for N70 billion Small and Medium Enterprises and RTEAN crisis.
“In the palliatives that were rolled out we have not seen anything put in place for federal workers.
“We need a wage award. The palliatives rolled out by the government are not far-reaching. We believe that the government can do much more,” he said.
Osifo also said that the TUC leadership would continue to engage with the federal government to ensure that its demands are addressed.