The Chief Justice of Nigeria (CJN) Justice Ibrahim Muhammad has urged Judiciary workers in the country to end the over 40 days strike action in “the interest of the nation.
The Judiciary Staff Union of Nigeria (JUSUN) had called out its members to embark on an indefinite strike action to protest the non implementation of financial autonomy of the Judiciary particularly in the states.
JUSUN had maintained that the courts across the country which had been under lock and key since April 6, would not be reopened until government meets their demands.
Justice Muhammad however appealed to the striking workers to reason with other stakeholders and end the industrial action that has impacted virtually every sector of the economy.
The CJN made the appeal on Tuesday following a meeting with the Labour Minister, Dr Chris Ngige, who visited to inform him on the progress made so far on the negotiations to address JUSUN’s demands.
Muhammad stated that calling off the strike would also allow opportunity for further negotiations towards the resolution of the dispute.
Besides, the CJN observed that some of the issues in contention are already sub judice, as such there was need to give requisite legal process enough opportunity to be exhausted, a statement by Mr Ahuraka Isah, media aide to the CJN, stated.
Meanwhile, the Minister of Labour and Employment, has assured that the strike by legislative and Judiciary workers would end by next week.
Ngige spoke shortly after a meeting with some heads of courts, led by the Chief Justice of Nigeria (CJN), Justice. Ibrahim Muhammad.
According to him, series of meetings with stakeholders, including state governors have been scheduled for between Tuesday and Thursday to “to iron out the few remaining grey areas.
He said the meeting, which was held in the chambers of the CJN, was to discuss issues surrounding the implementation of the financial autonomy provision as it relates to the Judiciary.
“There are some grey areas, which the governors mentioned, and I needed to be on the same page with the Secrtary of the NJC (the National Judicial Council), who is representing the judges at our other meetings.
“So that is why I am here. I have met with some heads of courts and we have discussed”, the minister said.
He added that there will also be another meeting on Thursday with the striking Judiciary workers.
Ngige said, “So, we will fine tune some of the things we got here. We will crystalise them all and also meet with the governors tomorrow (Wednesday)”.
On whether there was the likelihood of an early end to the strike, the minister said: “I am very optimistic that by next week, we will put an end to this”.