All Nigeria Latest News reports that the federal government through the Attorney General of the Federation and Minister of Justice, Lateef Fagbemi, on Sunday, says the planned strike by the Nigeria Labour Congress (NLC) and the Trade Union Congress (TUC) is illegal.

The organised Labour on Friday declared an indefinite strike beginning from Monday, 3 June across the country.

The strike is to compel the government to agree on a new minimum wage for workers, and review the increase in the price of electricity for some consumers.

But, the federal government, has appealed to the workers’ unions to shelve the strike.

A Senior Advocate of Nigeria (SAN), Mr Fagbemi, in a letter dated 1 June and addressed to the National President of the NLC, Joe Ajaero, and TUC’s National President, Festus Osifo, said “the strike action by organised Labour is premature.”

The Minister faulted the planned industrial action on the grounds that the federal government and other employers of labour involved in a tripartite committe to determine a new minimum wage had not declared an end to negotiation.

Referencing some sections of the Trade Dispute Act 2004, the justice minister said the law requires the NLC and TUC to “issue mandatory strike notices of a minimum of 15 days.”

The AGF further pointed out that the legitimacy of the the proposed strike is called to question by the fact that the Labour unions failed to comply with “statutory conditions precedent.”

Also, Fagbemi reminded the labour leaders that the strike is at variance with an order of the National Industrial Court of Nigeria where issues on fuel subsidy removal by President Bola Tinubu the attendant consequences are being adjudicated on.

He said the government took measures including wage award and provision of CNG-powered vehicles for public transportation to “ameliorate the adverse consequences” of fuel subsidy removal.

While assuring the labour unions of government’s commitment to conciliatory approach to resolving disputes concerning citizen’s welfare, Mr Fagbemi said, “I would like to urge you to kindly reconsider the declaration of strike action and return to the ongoing negotiation meetings.”

The AGF’s letter was copied to the Secretary to the Government of the Federation, George Akume; the Chief of Staff to the President, Femi Gbajabiamila; National Security Adviser (NSA), Nuhu Ribadu; Inspector-General of Police, Kayode Egbetokun; Director General of the State Security Service (SSS), Yusuf Bichi; and Minister of State for Labour and Employment, Nkiruka Onyejeocha.

The NLC and TUC have yet to respond to the call by the justice minister to shelve the strike, which is scheduled to commence few hours away.

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