Strike’ll be Worse on Tuesday, National Assembly Workers Vow
Workers under the auspices of the Parliamentary Staff Association of Nigeria began their four-day warning strike on Monday, crippling legislative and business activities at the National Assembly.
They blocked entrances to the complex and shut power and water supplies to the building.
The development forced banks, restaurants and other businesses in the building to close shop, with the Automated Teller Machines shutting down due to power failure.
It was learnt that the National Assembly Service Commission chapter of PASAN also shut down the secretariat on Monday.
The workers threatened a worse situation on Tuesday when members of the Senate and House of Representatives will reconvene for plenary.
Several workers, who declined to be named, said legislative activities would be crippled on Tuesday as those who would carry out administrative duties at the chambers would not be available. “No sergeant-at-arms will carry the mace, they will carry it themselves,” one of them was heard saying this.
The workers had in the early hours of Monday stormed the entrances to the National Assembly Complex and taken charge of the gates. They initially prevented cars from gaining entry but later allowed cars in but forced the occupants to open and close the gates themselves.
Petty traders made brisk business, especially those selling water and snacks.
The workers had planned to adopt a sit-at-home approach but changed the plan.
In a letter of notification sent to the leadership of the National Assembly on Saturday, PASAN stated that all its members would stay at home for four days – from Monday to Thursday.
The notice read, “Sequel to our earlier notice of strike action as contained in the communique dated 29th November 2018, the Congress of Parliamentary Staff Association of Nigeria, National Assembly chapter, unanimously resolved at its emergency congress held on 14th December, 2018, to embark on a four-day warning strike commencing on Monday, 17th, to 20th December, 2018.”
“By this notice, be kindly informed that the entire members of PASAN shall stay off their respective duties on the above-mentioned dates.”
It was observed that lawmakers stayed away from from the premises during the protests.
The Majority Leader of the Senate, Senator Ahmed Lawan, who was accosted by journalists, said the issue would be resolved.
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