Nigerian Health Workers Set For Nationwide Solidarity Shutdown Over Protracted ASUU Strike

Affiliate unions of the Nigeria Labour Unions have started to implement one of the resolutions reached at the last National executive Council meeting, NEC.

The resolution was to begin solidarity in support of all university-based unions over the five months old strike and one union that has hit the ground with this directive is the medical and health workers Union of Nigeria, MHWUN

Now find below a release on the strike by Academic staff union of universities, ASUU among other unions action.

Press Release

MEDICAL AND HEALTH WORKERS UNION OF NIGERIA (MHWUN) STANDS IN SOLIDARITY WITH THE UNIVERSITY BASED UNIONS IN THE ONGOING STRUGGLE TO EMANCIPATE AND REPOSmION THE PUBLIC TERTIARY
INSTITUTIONS IN NIGERIA FOR PROGRESSIVE DEVELOPMENT

The Leadership of Medical and Health Workers’ Union of Nigeria have followed
with a keen interest the ongoing industrial impasse in the Country’s Public tertiary
Institutions, which had led to their closure since 14h February, 2022 and the
lethargic response of Government in addressing the problem.

The ASUU, NASU, SAUTHRIAI, NAAT had been on strike for more than five months due to the apparent failure of Government to sign the re-negotiated 2009
Agreement with ASUU, failure to honour the terms reached at the May 2021 MoU
signed with ASUU, and habitual failure of Government to respect Collective
Bargaining Agreements willingly signed with Unions.

Also in contention is the
refusal of Government to adopt the home-grown innovative solutions provided by
the Unions in the payment of University Workers’ Salaries.

It is equally disheartening to note that since the unfortunate strike started,
Government actions and response to such a huge national embarrassment had
been more of “motion without movement”. If anything, Government response has
not gone beyond the watery statement of “We are meeting with the Unions…” or
the usual out-dated tactics of blackmailing Union Leaders as in similar situation.

No responsible Government would close down its Public Tertiary Institutions in
this 21st century because of patriotic demands for a better funding of its
Universities and good welfare for its teaching and non-teaching staff. This is
shameful.

The Leadership of Medical and Health Workers Union of Nigeria is
particularly irked that the Federal Government and the political Actors have
abandoned the children of the poor masses at home to waste away, instead
they are seen dissipating energy and resources that could have been used to
resolve the issue to fund political tussle to occupy plum offices that previous
occupiers have failed to use for the benefit of the masses. We are more
worried with the development because the academic future of the Citizenry
is being disrupted whereas the politicians and top Government officials have
their children mostly in well funded and equipped oversea schools or in
relatively expensive private schools in Nigeria.

Discerning minds will agree with us that the negative impact of the strike to
the future of our children and Nigeria in general cannot be quantified. We
call on people of goodwill to stand up in defense of the right and future of
our children and Nigeria, by demanding Government to do the right thing
and bring back these children to the classroom.

We condemn in strong terms the lethargic attitude of Government in
resolving the issues in contention.

In order to protect the future of our
youths whose academic life is being disrupted, we call on the Government to
implement without further delay all the agreements it had entered with the
Unions. We urge the relevant MDAs to ensure that President Mohammadu
Buhari’s earlier directive to resolve all outstanding issues with the Unions is
backed by immediate acceptable action that would end the stalemate.

MHWUN wishes to use this medium to unequivocally state that we firmly
stand behind the University based Unions and the clear position of NLC
leadership in this historic struggle.

Our State Councils have been put on a
red alert, as we will not hesitate to declare a solidarity strike in support of
the Unions if Government fails to resolve the issue within a reasonable time.

Furthermore, the Medical and health Workers Union of Nigeria categorically
condemn in the strongest words the spate of insecurity in the Country. The
rising orgies of killing, banditry, kidnapping for ransom, and extreme
agitation for secession have assumed a dangerous dimension. Hardly any
day passes by without reports of security challenges in some parts of the
Country. Human lives have become so cheap and without value.

Nigerian
workers are no longer safe both at their homes and at work places, as many
have lost their lives to these enemies of State.

We therefore, demand for a
resolute action from Government to end this degrading assault on the
sovereignty of our Nation.

We equally condemn the current scarcity of diesel, cooking gas, petrol and
aviation fuel, and the rising wave of arbitrary prices all over the country.

This pathetic development has further exposed workers whose salarles and
income has already been eroded by inflation, to greater hardship. The
situation reinforced the earlier call by the organized Labour for a resolute
action on domestic refining of petroleum.

According to its 2021 OPEC
report, Nigeria export petroleum products worth 27.73 billion dollar,
but imported refined products of 71.28 billion dollar, leaving a deficit
of 43.46 billion dollar. (OPEC Report: March 21, 22).

To our Union,
there is no better time to end the madness of petrol importation than now.

Finally, as political activities are hitting up, it has become obvious that the
same political Actors that have brought us anguish, hunger, pains, death,
social and economic woes are seriously preparing to return to power. We
wish to state that it will no longer be business as usual. We wish to reiterate
our earlier call to all our members across the Country to ensure they register
and obtain their PVCs and wait for further directive from the Leadership of
the Union as Nigerian Workers’ are prepared to take back their country from
the economic buccaneers.

Com. Biobelemoye J. Josiah
National President

Com. Auwalu Yusuf Kiyawa
Acting Secretary General