Power supply in danger as union shuts down Ikeja Electric

The National Union of Electricity Workers (NUEE) on Monday stormed the Alausa headquarters of Ikeja Electric (IE) in a move that may worsen the epileptic power to the bulk of Lagos Mainland.

A message posted on Facebook said “Staff of Ikeja Electric may have to vacate some locations following ongoing protests. This is to safeguard lives of our valued staff. We deeply regret any inconvenience to customers.”

Monday’s action by the union followed the discontinuation of talks between the company and Labour early in April.

The company and workers agreed to the talks as a way forward after last month’s strike following disengagement of workers. The strike completely crippled power supply in the country’s economic capital.

IE said it had discontinued the talks because “the negotiation was tending towards a proposition that would jeopardise transparency, employee performance and service excellence to customers.”

Labour responded by shutting down the company’s operations in Ikeja and other facilities.

Last month, Labour picketed the electricity distribution company for three days over the disengagement of workers who failed to meet the company’s performance objectives and were deemed to be performing below standard. However, the picketing was suspended after Ikeja Electric reached an agreement with the National Union of Electricity Workers (NUEE) and the Nigerian Labour Congress (NLC) to set up a committee to review the performance appraisal and competency assessment process.

Ikeja Electric’s Head of Corporate Communications, Felix Ofulue, said the company discontinued the talks “due to a clear determination by representatives of Labour to stick to a pre-conceived and irreversible position that the process was flawed. Therefore, the review process was an exercise in futility.