Strike: Delta Economy Grounded

The on-going strike action embarked upon by the Nigeria Labour Congress (NLC) and the Trade Union Congress (TUC) alongside their affiliate unions over the recent removal of fuel subsidy and subsequent increase in petrol pump price was successful in parts of Delta state as total compliance was observed.

The strike action had paralyzed economic activities in the state, grinding to a near halt all socio-economic endeavours of most people.

In Asaba, Delta state capital, all public and private offices, including the federal and state secretariats, banks, the Government House and the House of Assembly complied fully with the strike action as they were either locked or sealed up by the striking unions who went about with chains and padlocks.

The state acting chairman of the Nigeria Labour Congress (NLC), Comrade William Akporehe, who led the protest march from Cable Point, in Asaba, the state capital through Nnebisi road to Government House and the House of Assembly, before retiring to the Labour House, off Okpanam road urged the people to join in the strike action because the protest is for the interest of the Nigerian people.

At government House, Asaba, the Secretary to the State Government (SSG), Comrade Ovuzourie Macaulay, expressed delight over the peaceful nature of the protest, saying that the state government has provided several hundreds of buses and speedboats to mitigate the effect of the removal of fuel subsidy and make transport cheap for Deltans.

Also addressing the protesters, Speaker of the Delta state House of Assembly, Engr. Victor Ochei enjoined labour to be open for dialogue in the resolving the contending issues on the fuel subsidy removal.

The peaceful protest was manned by various security agencies which ensured that hoodlums did not hijack the protest for selfish purposes as well as a breach of the peace and security of lives and property.

The Police Public Relations Officer (PPRO), Mr. Charles Muka disclosed that the state command had ensured that its men were fully on ground to forestall any kind of chaos, adding that there had been no record of breakdown of law and order.

Meanwhile, in Warri, although the protest was totally enforced, some hoodlums who wanted to disrupt the peaceful nature of the protest were chased away by security agents, while a pro-subsidy group almost clashed with members of the labour unions before it was curtailed by the police.

The state labour leader, William Akporehe, has however declared that the strike would continue if the federal government refuses to revert to the status quo, adding that all earlier efforts  by labour and the federal government to reach an agreement were deadlocked.

He commended the leadership of NLC, TUC, and all affiliates of organised labour for coming out enmasse for the protest, and assured them that labour would ensure that the wishes of the people are met.

 

News Reporter
Blank NEWS Online founding Editor-in-Chief and Publisher, Albert Eruorhe Ograka, is a Graduate of Mass Communication. He also holds a Post Graduate Diploma (PGD) in Journalism from the International Institute of Journalism (IIJ).

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