By Stanley Onyekwere
The secretariat of the Federal Capital Territory Administration (FCTA) was desolate as an indefinite nationwide strike over alleged assault on NLC President Joe Ajaero entered day two, as activities were grounded, following tough measures taken by the leadership of the Joint Union Action Committee (JUAC) of FCTA/FCDA/SDAs, in order to enforce full compliance.
In particular, JUAC swung into action by shutting and barricading the main entrance into the premises of the FCT Administration with vehicles, thereby crippling routine official government and other business activities within and around the ever-busy public space.
Our correspondent reports that some workers, including journalists covering the FCTA and its Secretarial, Departments and Agencies (SDAs) who had turned up at the secretariat were prevented from accessing the premises could only mile around the gate while Labour leaders enforced compliance of “no entry, no going out.”
Recall that the Nigeria Labour Congress (NLC) and the Trade Union Congress (TUC) embarked on an indefinite strike on Tuesday, in protest against the alleged assault on NLC President Joe Ajaero in Imo State on November 1. And top on their demand is that government must condemn the brutalisation of their leader, in the State and followed with the perpetrators being prosecuted.
It was gathered that labour leaders had earlier stormed the secretariat to force the workers out of their offices.
Speaking with the JUAC President, Comrade Korede Muyideen Matilukuro, he said the action will continue till their demands were met.
Matilukuro called on President Tinubu to cut short his trip and return to Nigeria and do the needful.
He noted the fuel subsidy removal jas caused pain and that President Tinubu must return and re-strategise.
His words: “We are still singing the same song, meet Labours demand.
“The brutalisation of the NLC President should be condemned in its entirely and the culprits be arrested and prosecuted, particularly the Police officers involved and other individuals.”
According to him, the second reason for the strike is the hardship occasioned by the fuel subsidy removal and that government should have a re-tinkering.
He adds: “The hardship in the land has become unbearable, the fuel price hike is uncalled for. Right now Nigerians are in pain.
“ They are paying someone N30, 000 as a minimum wage and he is going to spend between N60, 000 to N70, 000 for transportation only from where he lives to the office, how does he survive? The mathematics is no longer adding up.
“They need to look at it from another angle. We believe in Nigeria, we believe in the government of President Bola Ahmed Tinubu.
“Here in the FCT, we believe in our own minister but we are not going to keep quiet, here we will ensure that the gate remain under lock and key.
“I know our other colleagues across the country are doing the same. We will not stop till the federal government sees reasons to act otherwise.
“The president is not in the country, if we are important to him he should cut short his trip and return home, he is out there because Nigerians voted for him to be President, but your house cannot be on fire and you are comfortable some where.
“The president should return and do the needful, he shouldn’t make us regret our voting him.”