Rail transportation operations have been grounded across Nigeria, as workers of the Nigerian Railway Corporation have embarked on a three-day warning strike, effective yesterday, Thursday.
Rail routes which are affected the Lagos-Ibadan, Abuja-Kaduna, and Warri-Itakpe routes.
Other notable rail routes to be affected by the industrial action of the 11,000-strong members of the Nigerian Union of Railways Workers, include the Lagos-Kano, Kano-Unguru and Aba-Port Harcourt.
Last week, the NUR, an affiliate of the Nigeria Labour Congress, threatened to embark on a three-day nationwide warning strike from November 18 to November 20, 2021 to press home their demands for improved welfare.
A meeting said to have been convened in Lagos on Saturday between the Minister of Transportation, Rotimi Amaechi, and the union, failed the resolve the issues.
When asked by our correspondent on Wednesday if the strike had been shelved, the NUR President-General, Innocent Ajiji, replied in the negative and stressed that all railway workers would down tool as from 12am today (Thursday).
An effort, by government, to halt the strike through a court injunction proved unsuccessful, as key union officials were said to have gone underground, Thursday, to evade service of injunction.
“We are going ahead with the strike on Thursday. They have been trying to get us to serve us a court injunction. That is the kind of government we have in place now. However, we’ve not been served and so by early hours of Thursday morning our strike commences,” Ajiji stated.
On whether the strike would affect all the rail stations in Nigeria, Ajiji said, “Yes. The Abuja-Kaduna, Lagos-Ibadan, Warri-Itakpe, Lagos-Kano, Kano-Unguru and Aba-Port Harcourt, all those trains will stop. And even our offices will be closed down.
“And apart from those who operate the movement of the trains, we have local workshop workers, tracks men, admin department, everywhere will be closed down!”
Asked whether there had been any interface between the union and the minister, the NUR president said: “He has not said anything till today.
“We will be at the stations by 6am on Thursday and this is because in Abuja, for instance, the first train moves by 7am. So we must be there by 6am to stop the train from moving.”