The Nigeria Labour Congress (NLC) in Delta state, southern Nigeria, on Wednesday shut offices and schools in Asaba ahead of the planned nationwide strike over non-implementation of the N30,000 new minimum wage.
“We are on strike and that is all I can tell you for now. We expect offices and schools to comply,” Ofuburuku, NLC State chairman, told NAN by phone.
“The strike is in force that is why we are going round to enforce compliance.”
It was learned that the NLC members in Asaba, the state capital, closed government offices and turned back school children.
The national body of the union had threatened to go on strike from Thursday if the Federal Government failed to fully implement the new national minimum wage.
Before the meetings, labour was demanding 29 per cent increase for officers at grade levels 07 to 14 and 24 per cent adjustment for officers at grade levels 15 to 17.
While the Federal Government proposed an 11 per cent increase for officers at grade level 07 to 14 and 6.5 per cent adjustment for workers at grade level 15 to 17.
The state government secretariat, along Okpanam road, was shut as some workers who had reported for work were seen milling around the gate.
Tina Okolo, a civil servant told NAN that the NLC members came and locked her office premises and ask the workers to go home.
“They came this morning and ask us to go home. I reported to work at about 8:15am, but now am going home,” Okolo said.
“I don’t know much about the strike, so I am just waiting to see how things will turn out.”
NAN reports that the gate of West-End Mixed Secondary School, Asaba, was also closed, as the students were seen going home at about 10:15 am.
A teacher, who pleaded anonymity, told NAN that the students had been asked to go home because of the strike.
Also, members of the NLC were seen at the Achievers Group of Schools, DLA road Asaba, driving out the students and trying to lock up the school gate.
However, most banks in Asaba remained open for business as customers continued their transactions without hindrance.