THE Attorney General of the Federation (AGF) and Minister of Justice, Lateef Fagbemi, has asked the organised labour to respect the June 5 order issued by the National Industrial Court, restraining both Nigeria Labour Congress (NLC) and Trade Union Congress (TUC) from embarking on any industrial action over fuel subsidy removal and related issues.
In a letter to the NLC and TUC, and Femi Falana, Fagbemi said that the plan by both labour bodies to embark on indefinite strike from October 3 was a violation of the subsisting order and a different disregard to the dignity and integrity of the court.
The AGF urged Falana to prevail on his clients to respect the order of the court and allow room for ongoing negotiations between parties on how to address the challenges associated with the fuel subsidy removal.
He noted that from the communique issued by the NLC after its National Executive Council meeting on August 31 and the September 26 joint communique by the Presidents of the NLC and TUC, it was obvious that the proposed strike action is premised principally in furtherance of issues connected with the removal of fuel subsidy, hike in fuel price and consequential matters of making provisions for palliatives and workers welfare.
He reminded them that a court order, regardless of the opinion of any party on it, remains binding and enforceable until set aside.
The AGF added that it is the earnest expectation of his office that Mister Falana will advise the labour unions on the need to protect the integrity of courts and observe the sanctity of court orders.
“The foregoing will afford parties more room for further mutual engagements, for a holistic and sustainable resolution of all outstanding issues on this matter in the overall national interest,” he said.
Copies of the letter have also been sent to the Minister of Labour and Employment, the Chief of Staff to the President, the National Security Adviser, the Inspector General of Police, and the Director General of State Security Service.