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Cablegate: Nigeria Nationwide Strike Sitrep #4: October 14

This record is a partial extract of the original cable. The full text of the original cable is not available.

141614Z Oct 04

UNCLAS LAGOS 002107

SIPDIS

E.O. 12958: N/A
TAGS: ELAB PGOV EPET KDEM ECON NI
SUBJECT: NIGERIA NATIONWIDE STRIKE SITREP #4: OCTOBER 14

REF: A. A. LAGOS 2072

B. B. ABUJA 1727
C. C. LAGOS 2096

1. (U) Summary. The nationwide strike continued for its
fourth day. The joint labor-civil society coalition will meet
in Abuja this afternoon and is expected to suspend the strike
for two weeks as planned. Oil production remains unaffected.
Around the country, many banks, offices, and schools remained
closed, though movement and commercial activity increased
from yesterday. There have been no reported security
incidents involving American
citizens. End Summary.

2. (U) The Federal High Court in Abuja yesterday declined the
GON motion for injunction relief to stop the four-day strike.

3. (U) The joint labor-civil society coalition will meet in
Abuja this afternoon to review the four-day strike. Coalition
leaders are expected to formally suspend the strike for two
weeks, in keeping with the resolution passed last week by the
National Executive Council of the National Labor Congress
(NLC). The coalition also will deliberate on strategies for
the next phase of the strike, which would begin October 29
should the GON and the coalition fail to reach an agreement.

4. (U) Also, NLC President Adams Oshiomhole is expected to
announce his decision on whether to continue participation in
the standing committee established by the GON to identify
measures to ease the hardship caused by the fuel price hike.
Labor has previously criticized the committee as a tactic by
the GON to finesse the public into seeing the price hike as a
fait accompli. Publicly, Labor has stuck to the position that
it would only be satisfied with a return to the former price.
If Labor withdraws from the committee, both sides will have
to identify another venue where GON-Labor negotiations can
take place.

5. (U) Oil sector contacts continue to report no effect on
production.

Reports from around the Country
-------------------------------

6. (U) LAGOS: Some fuel stations opened in Lagos today, and
queues quickly formed at the pumps. Government offices,
schools, and banks remained closed. The Nigerian Stock
Exchange and the Lagos office of the Central Bank were open.
In Oshogbo, members of the commercial drivers union
reportedly seized the vehicles of union members not observing
the strike.

7. (U) ONITSHA: Movement of people and traffic has increased.
Like yesterday, some banks are open. Most schools remained
closed.

8. (U) CALABAR: The governor's office operated on skeletal
staff; other government offices remained closed.

9. (U) PORT HARCOURT: Banks remained closed, as did most fuel
stations. The city is generally quiet. Pedestrian and
vehicular movement is still less than normal, but people are
moving freely.

10. (U) DELTA STATE: The Delta State Council of the NLC
reportedly decided to extend the strike to include Friday.
The council said it will extend the strike to show solidarity
with NLC President Oshiomhole, who was on his way to Asaba,
the capital of Delta State, when he was temporarily detained
last Saturday.
BROWNE

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