The Maritime Workers Union of Nigeria (MWUN) has suspended the seven days ultimatum given to shipping lines over the alleged refusal to negotiate the minimum standard for workers.
According to them, the ultimatum, which took effect from Thursday 17 February 2023, was to compel shipping lines to sign a Collective Bargaining Agreement (CBA) with the union, failing which workers would withdraw their services from the companies.
Adewale Adeyanju, the president-general of MWUN, said while other branches of MWUN had existing CBA with their employers, the Shipping Association of Nigeria (SAN) – the umbrella body for multinational shipping companies operating in the country – has been dodging their responsibilities by asking workers to go and negotiate individually with their employers.
“The shipping companies are making so much money at the expense of Nigerian workers,” Adeyanju said.
According to a statement sent to Business and Education News on Wednesday, MWUN said the suspension of the ultimatum followed the intervention of the Nigerian Shippers’ Council (NSC).
“The Ministry of Transport through the Nigeria Shippers Council has intervened and has called for a meeting scheduled for 13th April 2023 to hold at the Nigeria Shippers Council in Lagos,” the statement said.
Recall that in February, MWUN issued a seven-day strike notice to shipping companies in Nigeria over alleged anti-labour practices. The union threatened to cripple the operations of the shipping companies at the expiration of the ultimatum if its grievances were not addressed.