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Subsidy: NLC, TUC ask court to vacate order restraining them from embarking on strike

Subsidy: NLC, TUC ask court to vacate order restraining them from embarking on strike
June 09
20:05 2023

The Nigeria Labour Congress (NLC) and the Trade Union Congress (TUC) have asked the court to vacate the order restraining them from embarking on a nationwide strike over the removal of petrol subsidy.

On Monday, the National Industrial Court of Nigeria, Abuja division, asked the unions to halt the planned strike pending the hearing and determination of the ex parte motion filed by the federal government.

Olufunke Anuwe, the presiding judge, said the federal government was able to show that the planned strike was capable of disrupting activities in the health and education sectors.

The federal government had asked the court for an interim injunction preventing the labour unions from proceeding on the strike scheduled to begin on June 7.


On June 2, NLC issued a five-day ultimatum to the federal government to revert to the old price of petrol or face a nationwide strike.

In a motion filed by Femi Falana, the unions said the court lacks the “jurisdictional competence” to hear and determine the federal government’s case, citing that it was filed in violation of section 17 (2) of the trade disputes act.

The unions argued that the federal government did not disclose a “reasonable cause of action” against them.


“This court as presently constituted lacks the jurisdictional competence to hear and determine the matter and or make any orders as regards the trade dispute (subject matter of this suit) for failure to first refer the trade dispute to the industrial arbitration panel as mandated by part 1 of TDA,” the court document reads.

“The claimants/applicants’ suit offends the lucid provisions of Order 3 rules 1 and 6 of the national industrial court civil procedure rules, 2017.

“The defendants/applicants and their members have a right to strike under the trade unions act, the trade disputes act, the ILO convention and under several international treaties, which the 1st claimant/applicant is a signatory to.

“By virtue of section 40 of the constitution of the federal republic of Nigeria, 1999 as amended, Nigerian workers have the fundamental right to protest against policies of government considered inimical to their interests as reiterated in the cases of IGP VS ANPP (2008) 12 WRN 65, MUSA VS INEC.


“The claimants/applicants’ suit does not disclose a reasonable cause of action against the defendants/applicants.

“The plaintiff’s suit is lacking in bona fide, as it was filed to harass, irritate and embarrass the defendants/applicants, which constitutes an abuse of the judicial process.

“The claimants/applicants suppressed material facts before this honourable court thereby misleading the court to grant the exparte reliefs sought and obtained.

“In the circumstances and under established judicial authorities as well as extant rules of this honourable court, the claimants’ suit as presently constituted against the defendant is liable to be dismissed or struck out for want of jurisdiction and the ex-parte order set aside.”



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