Telecommunications Union Threatens To Strike in Nigeria

Telecommunications union threatens to strike in Nigeria. This new development simply means that the country may be thrown into another stage of internet disruption if anything about it is true.

Telecommunications Union Threatens To Strike in Nigeria

Telecommunications Union Threatens To Strike in Nigeria

The Private Telecommunications and Communications Senior Staff Association of Nigeria (PTECSSAN) has declared an indefinite strike starting April 4, 2024. The reason behind this decision is the alleged mistreatment of union workers by subcontractors of Huawei Technologies Nigeria Limited.

The subcontractors involved are Reime Group, Allstream Energy Solutions Ltd., Uppercrest Ltd., Tyllium Nigeria Ltd., and Specific Tools and Techniques Ltd. Earlier, on May 2, 2023, the union had issued a three-day warning strike notice to Huawei Technologies, citing anti-labor practices.

Who and What PTECSSAN Represents

PTECSSAN primarily represents workers in the private communications and telecommunications sector. They aim to ensure that their members’ basic needs and rights are respected, including access to legal support when required.

According to Okonu Abdullahi, the union’s General Secretary, workers are facing challenges such as working at irregular hours without adequate security measures, and there is no set schedule for work.

“These workers are working like slaves in their own country with no entitlements commensurate to their jobs. They are made to work without work hours and risk their lives going to the field in the wee hours of the nights without adequate security provided for them.”

He also stated that the union and the Ministry of Labor and Employment all worked together to help solve the said issues, but the parties that are involved all declined to meet.

What the Indefinite Strike Could Lead To

The indefinite strike by PTECSSAN could lead to disruptions in data and call services, and the union has asked Nigerians to understand any inconvenience caused by the strike.

This could be Nigeria’s second Internet disruption in less than a month. In March 2024, many African countries, including Nigeria, faced days of Internet disruption due to damaged subsea cables. And in the process causing Nigeria to lose about ₦273 billion ($593.6 million) during the repairs.

Challenges Faced By Workers As Highlighted by PTECSSAN

PTECSSAN highlighted several challenges faced by workers. And this includes the lack of recognition of their right to freely associate, the union not being recognized as a negotiating body for their welfare. And also issues with remitting membership dues.

The union has listed around seven unresolved concerns, including the refusal to start negotiations on the Collective Bargaining Agreement (CBA) for the benefit of its members.



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