Nigeria railway workers strike

Railway caoches at Bauchi station
Railway caoches at Bauchi station PHOTO: NAN

The railway workers are aggrieved that they work under poor conditions.

Workers of the Nigerian Railway Corporation, NRC, on Monday embarked on an indefinite strike over alleged poor condition of service.

All gates and offices at the corporation’s headquarters in Ebute-Metta, Lagos, were locked.

The workers under the umbrella of the Nigerian Union of Railway Workers, NURW, and the Senior Staff Association are complaining about a lack of promotion.

They are also complaining of an ongoing recruitment exercise for officers on Grade levels 7 to 13 while many existing qualified NRC staff have not been considered for the same positions.

Besides, they alleged that while all the locomotives had been insured, the drivers were not insured.

The National Secretary of the NURW, Martin Akinyanju, said that the meeting between the union and management held on Friday on the contentious issues was deadlock.

“The management met with the union on Friday and the outcome of the meeting was that most of our demands were statutory and would be looked into.

“They said that they will need clarification from the Minister of Transport, Senator Idris Umar, Accountant General of the Federation, Secretary to the Government of the Federation, Chief Anyim Pius Anyim, and Head of the Civil Service of the Federation.

“For three consecutive years, these demands have being recurring. What stops the management from promoting us and giving us what the findings had been to be able to know what to do.

“And since we could not agree on terms, we told management that the union has mobilised its members for an indefinite strike and we will resume work as soon as agreement is reached,” Mr. Akinyanju said.

The workers protested peacefully within the NRC Compound, carrying placards reading: “promote our workers, it is our right” and “EFCC and ICPC come to our aid.”

Some of the placards also read: “while staff are begging for promotion, the management still cultivates the habit of mismanagement by inviting outsiders for secret interviews.

“Promotion is motivation, give us our right and only loco is insured with N18 million while the crew are not insured with penny.”

The Managing Director of the NRC, Adeseyi Sijuwade, in a text message said that the management and the union would soon meet to resolve the impasse.

Mr. Sijuwade said that train operations would resume after the resolution of the crisis.

Armed policemen were seen monitoring the strike.

NAN


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