Nigeria may face another Internet disruption as telecommunications union threatens strike

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April 3, 2024
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2 min read
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  • The Private Telecommunications and Communications Senior Staff Association of Nigeria (PTECSSAN) has announced an indefinite strike starting April 4, 2024.
  • This decision stems from the alleged mistreatment of union workers by Huawei Technologies Nigeria Limited's project subcontractors, which include Reime Group, Allstream Energy Solutions Ltd., Uppercrest Ltd., Tyllium Nigeria Ltd., and Specific Tools and Techniques Ltd.

PTECSSAN primarily serves its members by collaborating with private communications and telecommunications companies. The union wants to ensure that its members’ basic needs and rights are met, including access to legal counsel when needed.

According to a recent statement from the union's General Secretary, Okonu Abdullahi, workers are made to work at odd hours without adequate security, and there are no set work hours.

“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 said the union and the Ministry of Labour and Employment worked together to resolve the issues, but the parties involved declined to meet.

The indefinite strike could disrupt data and call services, and the union has urged Nigerians to bear with 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 resulting from damaged subsea cables, and Nigeria lost about ₦273 billion ($593.6 million) amid the repairs. 

The union elaborated on the challenges faced by the company following the previous strike action, such as no recognition of the fundamental right of employees to freely associate, no recognition of the union as a negotiating body for employees' welfare, and remittance of membership dues into the union's account.

PTECSSAN identified approximately seven unresolved concerns in its recent move, including a refusal to begin negotiations on the Collective Bargaining Agreement (CBA) for the benefit of members.


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