Concerned Nigerians have called for the arrest and prosecution of staff of Transmission Company of Nigeria(TCN) under the aegis of the National Union of Electricity Employees (NUEE) for acts of terrorism and threatening the country’s security architectural network .
The call was made over the recent industrial actions of the workers, which led to the complete shut down of major power transmission substations across the country.
The call was made by Mr. Frank Tietie, Executive Director, Citizens Advocacy for Social & Economic Rights (CASER).
I. unduly compel a government or international organization to perform or abstain from performing any act;
ii. seriously intimidate a population ;
iii. seriously destabilise, or destroy the fundamental political, constitutional, economic ( social structures of a country or an international organization; or,
iv) otherwise influence such government or international organization by intimidation or coercion; and
c . involves, as the case may be, the interference with or disruption of the supply of water, power or any other fundamental natural resource, the effect of which is to endanger human life.
He said, “Therefore, it is only appropriate to institute criminal proceedings against them to serve as deterrence to other unions in the essential services sector that may contemplate any illegal strikes.”If electricity workers can embark on strikes, then members of the Nigerian Police and military- Army, Navy, and Airforce can also embark on strike actions. Such a situation is unimaginable. That is why the law prohibits such strike actions.
CASER however cautioned that the failure of the Attorney General, to enforce the legal standards as to illegal strikes as in the tradition of past administrations which, for reasons of lack of political will, failed to act in the public interest, will lead to the further expansion of the reign of impunity which has been the bane of Nigeria’s fragile democracy.Sola Ajulo, in a statement condemning the action of the NUEE, said the workers acted without considering the need to respect other citizens’ rights.
According to him, unions hold the Government hostage and demand ransom, or else, the citizen suffers!
He described the workers as self-centered “terrorists”, “hostage takers” and “blackmailers. He added that the Nigerian nation is gradually being held in bondage by ‘citizen activism’ and ‘unionism’ for self-centered reasons.