Strike: Labour shuts down national grid, FCTA secretariat

Ogunsakin Mustapha
5 Min Read
The Transmission Company of Nigeria (TCN), says that the Labour Unions have shut down the national grid, resulting in black out  nationwide.
Mrs Ndi Mbah, TCN’S General Public Affairs Manager, said this in a statement in Abuha on Monday. Mbah said that the national grid shut down occurred at about 2.19 a. m this morning.
She said at about 1:15 a. m, the Benin Transmission Operator under the Independent System Operations unit of TCN reported that all operators were driven away from the control room.
Mbah said that members of staff that resisted were beaten while some were wounded in the course of forcing them out of the control room and without any form of control or supervision, the Benin Area Control Centre was brought to zero.
“Other transmission substations that were shut down by the Labour Unions include the Ganmo, Benin, Ayede, Olorunsogo, Akangba and Osogbo Transmission Substations. Some transmission lines were equally opened due to the ongoing activities of the labour unions,” she said.
Mbah said that power generating units from different generating stations were forced to shut down some units of their generating plants.
She said that the Jebba Generating Station was forced to shut down one of its generating units while three others in the same substation subsequently shut down on very high frequency.
Mbah said that the sudden forced load cuts led to high frequency and system instability, which eventually shut down the national grid at 2:19 a. m.
“At about 3.23 am, however, TCN commenced grid recovery, using the Shiroro Substation to attempt to feed the transmission lines supplying bulk electricity to the Katampe Transmission Substation. The situation is such that the labour Union is still obstructing grid recovery nationwide. We will continue to make effort to recover and stabilise the grid to enable the restoration of normal bulk transmission of electricity to distribution load centres nationwide,”she said.

In a similar vein, the Joint Union Action Committee (JUAC) of the Federal Capital Territory Administration (FCTA), on Monday, locked the entrance of the secretariat in compliance with infinite industrial action embarked by the labour union.

The News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) reports that the Nigerian Labour Congress and Trade Union Congress had on May 31 directed its members to embark on an indefinite strike from June 3.

The action, according to the unions, was over the failure of the Federal Government to increase the N60,000 minimum wage it offered to workers and its refusal to reverse the recent increase in electricity tariff.

The President of JUAC, Mrs Rifkatu Lortyer, told newsmen in Abuja, that the committee’s decision to deny workers access to the Secretariat was in compliance with the NLC and TUC directive. Lortyer explained that JUAC, being part of the labour unions, has no choice but to fully enforce the strike.

“My advice to FCTA workers is simple: stay at home and be the obedient workers you’ve always been.

“The strike action is for the interest of the Nigerian workers,” she said.

The labour unions had during the May Day celebration issued the Federal Government an ultimatum to ensure that negotiation on a new national minimum wage was concluded by May 31.

The President of TUC, Festus Osifo, told newsmen that the strike had become necessary as the government declined to increase the N60,000 wage it offered on Friday during the meeting of the Tripartite Committee on National Minimum Wage.

Osifo also said that the strike was imperative due to the refusal of the government to reverse the hike in electricity tariff.

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