Protesters yesterday shut down all activities at the Ikeja Electricity Distribution Company (IKEDC) .The workers under the aegis of Citizens’ Access to Electricity Initiatives (CATEIN), in collaboration with civil society groups, barricaded the entrance of the company and also occupied the immediate surrounding, while protesting increase in electricity tariff amid darkness in the state.
The were seen marching up and down the Obafemi Awolowo Way, carrying various placards. While some others were sighted dancing at the entrance of the electricity distribution company, some more others were seen sitting inside BRT buses which they hired to the venue.
Speaking with newsmen, Comrade Chris Nwachukwu of Joint Action Against Victimisation and Exploitation of Workers and Masses, lamented the plight of Nigerians, particularly Lagosians in the hand of IKEDC, declaring that the company was incapable of carrying out the task assigned to it.
He accused the IKEDC of alleged exploitation, saying the company had been engaged in over- billing of its customers for services not rendered.
Meanwhile, the firm has claimed that the Labour unions defied court order, to picket it.
The labour unions, under new coalition, picketed the facilities and distrupted activities of the firm, which may eventually lead to total collapse of power supply to its customers.
Felix Ofulue, Head of Strategy and Communication, Ikeja Electric, told Lagos Metro that “We have served them with court injunctions from the National Industrial Court (NIC) for the issue of sacked former employees to be addressed, but they decided to defy it and disrupt our activities.”
On how to resolve the issue, he said the company has scheduled a meeting with the Minister of Labour and Productivity, Chris Ngige, in Abuja on how to find a lasting solution to the crisis.
When asked if the company is thinking about using security force to dislodge them, he stated that “we see them as our partners in progress and we cannot resolve to use of force.
We will continue to engage them, but the truth is, it will eventually disrupt our services and power supply may eventually be affected.”
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