Posted by News Express | 11 September 2015 | 3,139 times
The Nigeria Labour Congress (NLC) says lack of respect for agreements reached via collective bargaining is the major cause of incessant strikes by unions in the country.
The President of NLC, Dr. Ayuba wabba, said this at the News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) Forum on Thursday in Abuja.
He said that the federal government often reneged in implementing agreements reached with unions without seeking a review of such agreements.
“NLC is not a strike monger; we are not; so strike in industrial relations parlance is a last resort.
“When workers are pushed to the wall and they have no other thing to resort to, they then resort to strike because there will always be conflict between the employer and the employee.
“That is natural in every human endeavour; conflict is bound to actually occur and the workplace is not isolated from all of that, but in most cases in Nigeria, especially in the past years, the major causative agent of strike by unions is lack of respect for collective bargaining agreements.
“I was the Chairperson of the Joint Health Sector Union; we had a collective bargaining agreement signed by both parties, supervised by the Ministry of Labour, but when the time for implementation became due, government reneged.
“Despite a lot of effort, they still reneged; what they did was to refer the case to the National Industrial Court.
“National Industrial Court also ruled in the favour of the workers to say that on these issues, the workers were right and therefore, go and implement; even with that, government found it difficult to actually implement.”
He, however, said that strikes could be avoided and reduced, if both parties would keep to agreements reached.
He said that the new NLC leadership would seek a new method that would commit all parties to agreements reached.
“We must begin to canvass for a new way of doing things once collective agreements are signed, both parties must be committed to it.
“If they are difficulties in meeting up with the agreement, there is nothing stopping either of the parties to actually seek for review.
“We look at reality and what can be done to address the issues; we don’t need to wait until workers withdraw their services because they have been pushed to the wall.
“I think it doesn't help us and that has led actually to a loss in revenue, man-hour and in some cases loss of life because in the healthcare sector any strike that is allowed to last more than a day, a lot of people actually will be affected.
“So this is the reality and therefore for us in NLC, we will actually try to canvass among the key players in industrial relations, to see how we can improve on our industrial relations commitment.” (Channels TV)
•Photo shows NLC President, Ayuba Wabba.
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