Nigerian strike cripples economy over minimum wage

Nigeria faces a nationwide shutdown as major unions launched an indefinite strike on Monday to protest stagnant wages amidst a crippling cost-of-living crisis.

The strike has paralyzed the country, closing schools, public offices, and airports, while also shutting down the national power grid.

This action comes after negotiations between the government and unions, including the Nigeria Labour Congress (NLC) and the Trade Union Congress (TUC), failed to reach an agreement on a new minimum wage.

Unions consider the government’s offer of 60,000 naira ($45) per month a “starvation wage” in the face of skyrocketing prices.

President Bola Tinubu’s recent economic reforms, including ending fuel subsidies and currency controls, are blamed for the crisis.

These policies, while aimed at attracting foreign investment, have led to a tripling of fuel prices and a weakening Naira, making basic necessities unaffordable for many Nigerians.

The strike has had a significant impact:

  • Transportation: Domestic flights have been cancelled, and the Abuja airport is expected to shut down entirely on Tuesday.
  • Government services: Public offices, courts, and schools across the country remain closed.
  • Power: The national electricity grid has been shut down, leading to widespread blackouts.


Union members are urging workers to stay home and respect the strike, with increased security presence reported on the streets.

The situation highlights the growing frustration among Nigerians struggling with economic hardship.

While previous protests and strikes have seen limited success, the current nationwide shutdown underscores the unions’ resolve and the severity of the crisis.

The government has yet to comment on the strike, and it remains unclear how long this disruption will continue.

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