Offices, schools and courts controlled by the Federal Government have shut down businesses in Enugu State in compliance with the nationwide strike directed by the National Labour Congress (NLC).
A visit by the News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) to the Federal Secretariat, National Library, University of Nigeria, Enugu Campus, Federal Government Colleges, Federal High Court, Appeal Court and the Industrial Court of Nigeria observed that their offices and gates were shut.
At the Federal Secretariat, only workers of the Nigeria Immigration Service were working as they were said to be on essential service.
At the Federal High Court, it was observed that although major offices were closed, lawyers were seen to be holding a court session in honour of late Justice Innocent Umezulike, former Chief Judge of Enugu State.
Students of the Federal Government College in Enugu metropolis were seen hanging around major roads after being sent home.
A student of the college, Master Chinonso Eneh said they were sent home because of the strike.
Also, a teacher who simply identified herself as Mrs Uche said teachers had to go to school in order to hear directly from the principal and prevent unnecessary sanctions.
“We went to school to get the directive from our principal because she is our boss and she is the one they will communicate with, not us,” she said.
She agreed that after the directive to embark on strike had been communicated, students were sent back home.
However, major parastatals, schools and hospitals under the state government are yet to comply as workers are still seen carrying out their daily activities and transactions.
The NLC Chairman in Enugu State, Comrade Virginius Nwobodo, said the strike was long overdue.
“This issue of minimum wage that led to this strike is long overdue and there is no better time to fight than now.
“Federal workers in the state have fully complied with the directive but we are still experiencing little problem as regards compliance from the state workers.
According to him, the directive to workers is not to spoil the work of any government but to compel and pressurize leaders to heed to workers demand.
“As I am speaking to you now, we are making moves to meet with their leaders and compel them to also join the strike because what we are fighting for also concerns state workers,” Nwobodo said.
In the same vein, the Chairman, Association of Senior Civil Servants in Enugu State, Comrade (Mrs) Nneka Agbogu expressed satisfaction with the level of compliance to the strike by civil servants.
“The level of compliance has been very impressive because we have been monitoring too and compliance ratio is very impressive.
“We are just passing a message and if they do not like such messages, they should accede to our demand of N56,000 minimum wage.
“This wage is a meagre sum compared to the millions they get as salaries and allowances monthly,” she said.
Agbogu said she would not mind if the strike continued until the demands of workers were implemented.
Additionally, the State Chairman, Enugu State Judiciary Staff Union of Nigeria, Comrade Chinedu Mba said there had been full compliance on the part of the judiciary staff.
“The Industrial Court and the Court of Appeal has been locked and immediately the court session that is being observed for the late Chief Judge of Enugu is concluded, I will lock up till further notice.
“Workers can no longer be fooled by insensitive leaders who only care about themselves,” Mba said.