APGA National chairman, Ezeokenwa advocates best way to avoid labour union strikes in Nigeria

The National Chairman of APGA, Barr. Sly Ezeokenwa advocates the best way to avoid labour union strikes in Nigeria – NDUKA ANYANWU

The Nigeria Labour Congress (NLC) and its Trade Union Congress (TUC) counterpart on Monday 3rd June 2024, shut down the economy of the Nigeria State following the ongoing indefinite strike.

Most workers were prevented from gaining access to their workplaces and some staged a peaceful protest as well some stayed at home. Labour Unions in Nigeria commenced the strike after the government failed to meet its demand for a new minimum wage.

According to the APGA National Chairman, Barr. Sly Ezeokenwa, some of the best ways to avoid labor union strikes in Nigeria are through: Dialogue and Communication, Proactive Governance, Collaborative Problem-Solving, Improved Working Conditions, and Regular Engagement.

He further gave elaboration on the means to stop incessant strikes in Nigeria, and in his opinion and suggestion, the APGA National Chairman believes that this can be a guide to aiding the Presidency focus and deliver dividends of Democracy to the good people of Nigeria.

1. Dialogue and Communication: Encourage an open dialogue between the government and labor unions to address grievances and resolve issues peacefully; these may include:

  • Establish a dedicated platform for regular meetings between government representatives and labor union leaders.
  • Encourage open and transparent discussion of issues, concerns, and demands.
  • Foster a culture of active listening and empathy to understand the perspectives of both
    parties.
  • Ensure timely response to union demands and concerns, avoiding prolonged silence
    or neglect.

2. Proactive Governance: Address the welfare and needs of workers promptly, avoiding the accumulation of grievances that can lead to strikes with such assertions as:

  • Anticipate and address potential issues before they escalate into strikes.
  • Conduct regular needs assessments and impact evaluations to identify areas requiring improvement.
  • Implement policies and programs that benefit workers, such as training and development opportunities.
  • Demonstrate a commitment to workers’ welfare, showing that their interests are valued.

3. Collaborative Problem-Solving: Foster a culture of cooperation between government and labor unions to resolve disputes and find mutually beneficial solutions by:

  • Establishing joint committees comprising government and labor union representatives.
  • Encouraging collective bargaining and mutual agreement on solutions.
  • Fostering a culture of compromise and flexibility, finding a middle ground when necessary.
  • Celebrating successes and learning from setbacks, using them as opportunities for
    growth.

4. Improved Working Conditions: Ensure fair compensation, safe working environments, and adequate benefits for workers, reducing the likelihood of strikes. These could be by:

  • Ensuring fair compensation, including regular salary payments and benefits.
  • Providing safe and healthy work environments, adhering to international standards.
  • Offering opportunities for professional growth and development.
  • Promoting work-life balance and supporting employees’ well-being.

5. Regular Engagement: Regularly engage with labor unions to understand their concerns and address them before they escalate into strikes such as:

  • Schedule regular town hall meetings and feedback sessions.
  • Encourage union leaders to engage with government officials frequently.
  • Use technology, such as online platforms, to facilitate communication and feedback.
  • Ensure accessibility and inclusivity, involving all stakeholders in the engagement process.

By adopting and implementing these measures, the government and labor unions can build trust, foster collaboration, and address issues proactively, reducing the likelihood of incessant strikes in Nigeria. This APGA National Chairman believes this would lead to labor union strikes being avoided and promoting industrial harmony and progress in Nigeria.

Note: This brief article is written on behalf of Barrister Sly Ezeokenwa, the APGA National Chairman.

Nduka Anyanwu

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