By Ike Uchechukwu, Calabar

Justice Sanusi Kardo of an Industrial Court, Calabar, Cross River state, Nigeria, has ordered suspension of the ongoing strike embarked upon by the organised labour in the state, but labour is adamant.

Justice Kardo, yesterday, restrained labour and another affiliate union from further holding rallies pursuant to the strike and locking up of government premises and ordered that the strike should be suspended with immediate effect.

The court held that the strike action embarked upon by the Nigeria Labour Congress, NLC, in the state did not comply with S.18 of the Trade Dispute Act.

The court further urged parties to negotiate on any issues if there are any to be negotiated to arrive at an amicable resolution.

Vanguard learned that the Attorney General and Commissioner for Justice, Tanko Ashang, dragged NLC to court for embarking on strike since last week and locking up government offices.

Labour not aware

Meanwhile, Cross River State Head of Service, Mrs Geraldine Akpet-Ekanem, late night in a statement, called on workers to report to work following the order by Justice Kardo squashing the strike.

In a swift reaction,  Organised Labour comprising NLC, Trade Union Congress, TUC, and Joint Public Service Negotiating Council, JNC, has denied knowledge of any court order,  adding that they were not aware of such matter in court.

Speaking to Vanguard,  Chairman of TUC, Cross River State, Monday Ogbodum said labour was not aware of any court process or order.

He said: “We are not aware of any court process, order whatsoever. No worker in Cross River State will resume work in Cross River until they hear from us.

“There is no work and it remains that way. Workers should remain calm and stay at home till they hear from us,” he said.

On his part, Secretary, JNC, Clarkson Otu told Vanguard last night on the telephone that the order was strange to them as no process was served on them.

“To be candid, no court process was served on TUC or JNC I can’t speak for NLC at the moment. We have not seen any court order stopping the strike either.

“Be that as it may,  we must meet with the people who sent us first before any decision can be reached, and let it be known also that court order cannot compel workers to go back to work, we must meet as a group and decide before anything happens.

“For anyone claiming that due process was not followed, the person is very wrong, because statutory notices were issued by organised labour before the strike commenced, and we are on the side of the law as far as this industrial action is concerned.

“So no court order can cause workers to return to work just like that,” he said.

Vanguard News Nigeria


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