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Courts shut down as judiciary staff embark on nationwide strike

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Judiciary workers, on Tuesday morning, embarked on a nationwide strike to push for financial autonomy for the judicial arm of government.

The judiciary workers embarked on the strike despite pleas by the Nigerian Bar Association (NBA) to shelve the industrial action.

The NBA had said the timing for the strike action was wrong giving that the Covid-19 pandemic which halted economic and judicial activities, created a constraint in the Nigerian law courts.

While workers across the country had resumed official duties after the public holiday, the doors of the courts remained shut.

The Nigerian judiciary joins the National Association of Resident Doctors (NARD), and the Academic Staff Union of Polytechnics (ASUP) to embark on industrial action as a means to send strong signals to the federal government.

All judiciary workers under the aegis of the Judiciary Staff Union of Nigeria (JUSUN), are bound the strike action across the country.

JUSUN had on April 1, 2021, sent out a memo directing all states and zonal heads to comply with the strike action which begun Tuesday morning.

The circular signed by the union’s general secretary, I. M. Adetola, stated that the strike was necessitated by the failure of the federal and state governments to implement a judgement of the Federal High Court, which granted financial autonomy to the judicial arm of government.

The union stated that it had at its last National Executive meeting on March 13, 2021, in Abuja, issued a 21-day ultimatum to the government to implement the financial autonomy of the judiciary with a threat that failure of which JUSUN will have no other option but to resume the suspended national strike action.

“Therefore, as a result of the public holiday on April 5, 2021, the strike action has been postponed to Tuesday, April 6, 2021.

“You are directed to shut down courts/departments in your states until further notice from the National Secretariat of JUSUN in Abuja,” the memo partly read.

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