Judicial workers’ strike may resume October 2

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Judicial workers under aegis of the Judiciary Staff Union of Nigeria, JUSUN, has threatened to resume their suspended strike on October 2.

It was learnt that JUSUN gave the threat after the meeting of the National Executive Council of the union met during the weekend.

The union was said to have resolved to embark on fresh round of strike if stakeholders refused to comply with the Memorandum of Understanding reached separately with them on January 1 and August 1, 2014.

Rising from the emergency NEC meeting of the union held at Labour House, Abuja, the union condemned the failure of the stakeholders, including Accountant-General of the Federation and others to respect the MoU they entered into with JUSUN.

A communique released after the meeting was jointly signed by the President, Marwan Adamu and the union’s General Secretary, Isaiah Adetola.

The communiqué read in part, “NEC in session condemns the delay in allocation/release of funds to Federal judiciaries through National Judicial Council (NJC) and resolved that an end be put to it forthwith.”

The union commended the Chief Justice of Nigeria, Justice Aloma Muhktar, for her intervention in asking the stakeholders to address issues relating to demand of the union in order to the disruption of judicial activities at the end of the 45 days given in the aforesaid MoU.

It said, “Consequently, NEC oblige the CJN intervention by further extending the period of compliance agreed in the MoU by two weeks, and that they would resume the suspended strike on 2nd October, 2014.

“NEC condemns attempts by management of some state judiciaries to put magistrate/president/sharia court judges into administrative positions reserved for registrars, and resolved to resist any further attempt to fill such positions with staff that are not of registrar cadre.”

The union had on July 11 embarked on a nationwide strike following the failure of the various state governments to comply with the judgment of a Federal High Court Abuja, granting financial autonomy to the judiciary.

The Accountant-General of the Federation, is by the judgment expected to deduct the money accruable to the various state judiciaries directly from the federal allocations of various state governments.

However, through the intervention of the Minister of Labour, Emeka Wogu, the union had called off the strike after the various stakeholders, including the Accountant-General of the Federation, the Nigerian Bar Association, the Ministry of Justice among others, signed an MoU assuring that the judgment would be enforced in due course.

JUSUN had earlier written to the Minister of Staff Finance and chairman Federal Account Allocation Committee, Bashir Yuguda, over what they described as “obvious impunity, in-action and silence on the implementation of the decision of the Federal High Court, Abuja, on financial independent and autonomy of the judiciary.

A letter which was dated August 25, 2014, signed by the general secretary of the union, Comrade Isaiah Adetola, said the minister was absent at the re-conciliatory meeting in the instance of Minister of Labour and productivity, Emeka Wogu, with a view to resolve the impasse that led to the industrial action.

The letter was also copied to Chief Justice of Nigeria, the Minister of Labour and Productivity, the NLC president, Abdulwaheed Omar, NBA president, Chairman of the state Accountants-General Forum, Udo Hilary Igobara, Accountant General of the Federation and other stakeholders.

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