Lagos – The National Union of Electricity Employees (NUEE) on Wednesday disrupted activities at Electricity Distribution Companies in the South South over alleged violation of workers’ rights.
NUEE’s Senior Assistant General Secretary, Cyprian Akon, confirmed the development in an interview with newsmen in Lagos.
He said that electricity distribution companies in Rivers, Cross River, Bayelsa and Akwa Ibom had been shut down until further notice.
Akon said that NUEE had instructed its members to clamp down on the companies especially, the Port Harcourt Electricity Distribution Company (PHEDC) because of sack and reduction of salaries of unionists.
He said that the era of violation of workers’ rights was over.
The News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) reports that the union had earlier issued a 14-day ultimatum to the management of PHEDC which expired last week.
Akon said it was regrettable that PHEDC had continued to violate workers’ rights, treating labour-related issues with disdain.
He said there would be no power supply to the four states, where the PHEDC covered and that workers would not render services to the company until the union directed otherwise.
He alleged that the management arbitrarily dismissed employees and terminated their appointments without cogent reasons.
The union leader said that 33 workers, who refused management’s efforts to slash their salaries, were deployed to other locations and later sacked.
“This level of deceit, intimidation and victimisation cannot go unchallenged.
“Having allowed PHEDC to operate for about two years without disturbance with the management violating workers’ rights with impunity; labour has decided to act,’’ he said.
Akon said that the union did not want Nigerians to think that it had been sabotaging the operations of the companies because of its opposition to the privatisation of the sector. (NAN)