The Kaduna State Government has said that despite the suspension of strike by the Nigerian Labour Congress (NLC), power is yet to be restored in the state, thereby inflicting pain on residents of the state.
NLC had embarked on a five-day industrial to protest the recent disengagement of civil servants by the state government.
In solidarity with the protest by the NLC, aviation workers shut down operations of Kaduna International Airport (KIA) effective Sunday midnight.
Other affiliate unions including the National Union of Petroleum Employees of Nigeria (NUPENG), National Union of Electricity Employees of Nigeria (NUEE), National Union Of Textile, Tailoring and Garment Workers of Nigeria are also participating in the protest.
The striking workers suspended the strike on Wednesday to honour a meeting called by the Minister of Labour and Employment, Chris Ngige to resolve the rift it has with the Kaduna State Government.
But Muyiwa Adekeye, the spokesman of the Kaduna State Governor, Nasir El-Rufai, seem not to be pleased with the decision, accusing the workers of resorting to blackmail.
“Electric power is yet to be restored after it was shut down at dawn on Sunday, 16th May 2021, in brazen violation of the laws protecting essential services and infrastructure,” he said via a statement.
“That action removed any basis for state government officials to meet the NLC last Sunday. Denying our people electricity about 18 hours to the advertised commencement of their organised sabotage was akin to putting a gun on the government’s head. Government has a lawful duty not to indulge in blackmail.
“The Kaduna State Government is yet to see evidence that the NLC is backing off from its campaign of economic and social sabotage against the people of the State.
“Restoring electricity is vital to relieving some of the pain that needless acts of lawlessness have inflicted on our people. The unimpeded provision of essential services is vital to civilised order.
“Those who have disrupted it should promptly reverse themselves, not expect that it will be a matter for negotiation, much less being viewed as a precondition. KDSG will not participate in such a negotiation or countenance one whilst our people are still being denied their right to electricity.”