Subsidy Removal: Why NLC, TUC Can’t Embark On Strike Now — Court

The court said the tertiary institutions who have only just resumed after a long ASUU strike will also be affected by any form of industrial action.

A file photo of NLC members protesting.


The National Industrial Court has explained that the Organised Labour cannot embark on strike effective Wednesday because of the ongoing 2023 West African Senior School Certificate Examination (WASSCE).

The court, on Monday, also issued an order restraining the Nigeria Labour Congress (NLC) and the Trade Union Congress (TUC) from embarking on any form of strike.

Ruling on an exparte application filed before the court, Justice O.Y. Anuwe restrained the defendants (the TUC and the NLC) from embarking on the planned nationwide strike Wednesday pending the hearing and determination of the motion of notice dated June 5, 2023.

The judge also ordered that the defendants be immediately served with the originating processes, the motion on notice and the order of the court.

The Federal Government and the Attorney General of the Federation are applicant in the matter.

“The urgency enumerated in the affidavit of urgency and in counsel’s submission reveals a scenario that may gravely affect the larger society and indeed the well-being of the nation at large,” court document showed.

“Counsel has pointed that students of Secondary Schools nationwide, especially those writing WAEC exams will be affected; the tertiary institutions who have only just resumed after a long ASUU strike will also be affected, not leaving the health sector, amongst other sectors; and above all, the economy of the nation.

“In my view, this situation of extreme urgency that will require the intervention of this court.”

According to the West African Examinations Council (WAEC), this year’s WASSCE started on May 8 to end on June 23, 2023.

No Provision For Subsidy

President Bola Tinubu during his inaugural speech on May 29 at the Eagle Square in Abuja announced the removal of subsidy payment on petrol. The President said that the immediate past administration of Muhammadu Buhari did not make provisions for subsidy in the 2023 budget beyond June.

Many Nigerians had expected that the new price regime would come into effect by July 1 but almost immediately after the presidential pronouncement, queues resurfaced at filling stations across the country even as retail outlets hoard the product and increase prices.

Fuel Queues

Already, a litre of petrol is being sold at over N500 across the country following NNPC price adjustment and the presidential pronouncement on subsidy removal.

Fuel queues have since surged for the vital commodity, compounding the traffic situation in parts of the country, even as transportation cost skyrocket to more than 100% increment.

Discussions between the Organised Labour and the Federal Government had not been successful and the Labour had resolved to embark on a nationwide strike beginning Wednesday but that has been restrained by the court order of Monday, June 5, 2023.