By VICTOR AHIUMA-YOUNG
WORKERS of Nigerite Limited in Lagos have downed tools to protest unfair conditions of service, especially alleged deduction of their salary and perceived ill-treatment by the management.
The aggrieved workers who protested at the Oba Akran, Ikeja premises of the company, called for the removal of the Managing Director, whom they accused of being responsible for their plight.
Many of the protesting workers claimed they had been working in the company for over 15 years without problems, until the present Managing Director assumed office.
A worker who spoke on condition of anonymity lamented, “Our salaries are being deducted because we observed May 1 as public holiday. The MD also gave us code of conduct which is very difficult for us to comply with.
“Our colleagues in Coca-Cola company told us that the Managing Director did the same thing to them while he was serving in the company.”
Another, who simply identified himself as “Adesina” noted that the problem started a week ago, when workers told the Managing Director to refund the deducted salaries and also withdraw the code of conduct, which he refused.
He said “before we began strike, we gave management seven and three days ultimatum to put things in place and thereafter, we down tool and he ordered the policemen to come around while we were locked outside’.
As at the time of filling this report, the workers are yet to commence work, insisted that the managing director should leave the company for peace to reign.
Effort to speak with the management of the company proved abortive as one of the workers said he was not around.”
Leaders of local company’s unit of the National Union of Chemical Footwear, Rubber, Leather and Non-Metallic Products, Employees, NUCFRLANMPE, and the Chemical and Non-Metallic Products Senior Staff Association, CANMPSSA, appealed to the workers in vain to be patience.
Efforts of other individuals and group to persuade the workers weekend failed as they insisted the Managing Director must go.
Nigerite Limited is the manufacturer of NT fibre cement roofing and ceiling sheets, concrete roofing tiles and vinyl floor tiles.
The company was incorporated in Nigeria in 1959 but began its commercial operations in early 1961.