LABOUR UNREST UNDERDEVELOPMENT IN NIGERIA
LABOUR UNREST UNDERDEVELOPMENT IN NIGERIA
Abstract Labour unrest is a key obstacle to development in Nigeria. This is due to the fact that no nation can develop without human resources, which comprise and play an important part in nation formation and development.
The Nigerian case has been so pervasive that labour unrest has spread to every situation in which the government makes major public policy decisions that appear to affect the labour union and generally the masses without due consultation of labour statements;
especially those that affect the social lives of their members and welfare packages of the entire masses, particularly those that affect the socio-economic and political aspects, on which Nigerian development is dependent.
In order to analyse and explore this problem, we employed the relative deprivation theory as a theoretical framework, as well as the documentary research method to collect and analyse data.
This study, Labour discontent and Underdevelopment in Nigeria: An Assessment from 2000 to 2013, is being conducted to evaluate various methods of reducing labour discontent. This study is divided into five chapters,
the first of which deals with the study's background, problem statement, objective, significance, hypotheses, method of data collecting and analysis, scope and limitation of the study, and definition of terminology. The second chapter discusses Nigerian state policy and labour unrest.
In Chapter 3, we discussed labour unrest and underdevelopment. The fourth chapter of this paper discussed measures for reducing labour unrest in Nigeria.
Finally, in chapter five, the focus turned to the summary, conclusion, suggestion, and bibliography. This work, on the other hand, is incredibly acute, engaging, and educational.
Chapter One: Introduction
1.1 Background Of the Study
Nigeria's organised labour union activities stretch back to 1912. Nigerian workers, like their counterparts in other developing countries, have seen major changes in working conditions over time. Labour unions have played important roles in the transformation of most developing countries.
The government is the major employer of labour, with private individuals employing only a small percentage of the working class (Fajara, 2000). In Nigeria, labour unions have become highly important agents of socioeconomic transformation and class struggle, which began with the colonial fight and has lasted till the post-independence era (Aremu, 1996, Akinyanju, 1997).
Later, labour unions played an important part in the country's resistance against totalitarian military government. Similarly, under the current civilian regime, labour unions are in the forefront of the fight against unpopular government policies such as deregulation of the oil sector, worker retrenchment, and refusal to honour wage rise agreements.
Nigeria is a third-world country with numerous labour unions dispersed around the country. The unions are organised along industry lines, and as of 1977, 42 labour unions were recognised by the government and allowed to contribute significantly to the development of the state's economic, social, cultural, and even political systems.
The role of these labour unions is typically viewed as people-oriented since it tends to resist Governmental policies and decisions that are unfavourable to the masses through strike actions, protests, and other forms of labour unrest.
However, in a multi-ethnic democratic society like Nigeria, different labour unions exist throughout the country. However, for the sake of this study, we will focus on labour unions that have succeeded in influencing government policies and decisions in some way.
National Union of Petroleum and Natural Gas Workers (NUPENG), Nigeria Labour Congress (NLC), Nigeria Union of Teachers (NUT), Trade Union Congress (TUC),
Academic Staff Union of universities (ASUU), Petroleum and Natural Gas Senior Staff Association of Nigeria (PENGASSAU), and Nigerian Union of Journalists (NUJ) have all been involved in the past.
However, it is worth noting that the Nigerian Labour Congress (NLC) was created and inaugurated in 1978, and the 42 industrial unions became affiliates of the NLC with the legal backing of the trade union amendment Decree 22 of 1978.
After their role in opposing General Babangida's anti-people structural Adjustment programme, the trade union was reformed in 1989 to become 29 affiliate unions to the Nigerian Labour Congress.
As a result, in 2005, the trade union statute section 33 (2) was altered by substituting the word “central labour organisation” for the phrase “federation of trade unions,” with the purpose of weakening trade union solidarity.
Labour discontent has always been at the forefront of complaints and oppositions from time immemorial. In Nigeria, whenever the government makes life difficult for its citizenry through its policies.
Nonetheless, most organised labour activities in the form of disturbance to criticise government policies and projects frequently result in underdevelopment and grounding of the economy, culminating in revenue losses and other economic activities.
However, it is not impossible to assert that one of the major causes of worker dissatisfaction and, as a result, underdevelopment is government policies and plans on specific national issues, particularly those affecting labour unions across the country.
In light of these, this research work was inspired by a burning desire to interrogate the motives of labour unions in their activities such as protests, strikes, and so on against certain Governmental policies and programmes through a critical analysis and alternative roadmap to labour unrest with a view to averting the resulting and decay in Nigeria.
1.2 Statement of the Problem
Labour unrest remains one of the most visible impediments to the growth of our magnificent nation, particularly when the government implements policies and initiatives that are unfavourable to the majority of the people in the society (country).
This is because labour unions, which employ the NLC (Nigeria Labour Congress) and TUC (Trade Union Congress) as umbrella groups, tend to form components of organisations or unions that keep the country running through their everyday activities.
In other words, when there is labour unrest, the country's economy is disrupted and destabilised, which is why whenever Government policies and programmes that are unfavourable to labour are formulated,
there is usually a mass protest and strikes that disrupt the economy, as civil servants who are very important to the Government of the day also participate in the strike and protest by not going to work.
However, the study will make a critical appraisal of some of the important cases (protest and strikes) by labour unions, as well as explore their mode of operation, in order to River at the study's objectives; in order to do so, the following research question will serve as a guide.
i. Are public policies to blame for Nigerian labour unrest?
Is Nigeria's underdevelopment a result of labour unrest?
Can communication and collective bargaining help to reduce labour unrest in Nigeria?
1.3 Objectives of The Study
The study's overarching goal is to analyse the effects of labour unrest on Nigeria's growth. Thus, the study's particular aims are as follows: (i) Determine whether state policies are to blame for labour unrest in Nigeria.
(ii) Determine whether Nigeria's underdevelopment is the result of labour unrest.
(iii) Determine whether discussion and collective bargaining may reduce labour unions in Nigeria.
1.4 literature review
This work's literature evaluation is centred on two concepts: labour unrest and underdevelopment.
These are social science notions that, of course, lack a clear precise description, therefore scholars see it from their own perspective and encompass it.
According to Fagane (2009), a labour union is any arrangement, whether temporary or permanent. According to him, its main goals are to regulate the relationship between workers and masters, or to impose restrictive rules on the operation of any trade or business, as well as to provide members with services and advantages.
However, it is vital to recognise that labour unions are the primary source of power for working people. The collective strength of workers tends to facilitate the settlement of a number of challenges encountered by the workforce, which aids in nation building.
According to Amesen Eric (2007), labour unrest is a term used by employers or those in the business community to describe organising strike actions undertaken by labour unions, particularly where labour disputes become violent or where industrial actions are attempted in which members of a workforce obstruct the normal process of business and generate industrial unrest.
Labour unrest can be defined as the disruption of day-to-day labour activities that generate income both locally and internationally in the country and causes the economy to stagnate for a period of time due to strike action and protest by labour unions in the process of facilitating the interests of their members threatened by unfavourable government policies (Labour Unions).
Unrest in an organisation or an industrial establishment, on the other hand, can be disruptive when the organisational goals are harmful to the health of industrial workers.
Again, labour unrest can be described as the inability of members of a role set to reach an agreement on an issue related to the goal of interaction. There is little doubt that industrial conflict and labour unrest are realities of any economic system in which workers and management interact.
Labour unrest appears to be more pronounced in public sector organisations in particular. According to Anugwom and Ukaegbu (1998), public unions have significant market strength and are often in a position to play a crucial role in the political process, and it is this unique standing that makes them conflict prone.
The Scope of Labour Unrest
Labour unrest is so strongly tied to loss of peace because, as Ofube (2001) argues, unrest (conflict) is as important to life as life itself, because, as we all know, life without conflict is life without life.
As a result, labour discontent is not uncommon in any organisation (commercial or public). As a result, workers in the public sector are always dissatisfied with the government's handling of worker welfare and the nation's general poverty.
Anugwom (1997) defines labour unrest as a condition in which the country's economic crisis exposes workers to a high level of economic suffering. He also claims that given economic realities, public sector workers in particular may have regarded unrest as an opportunity to break free from the shackles of economic deprivation.
Okechukwu R. O. (2002) presents his opinion on Nigerian labour unrest, particularly the June 2000 strike, and argues that some government policies that are unfavourable to workers frequently create strike action and protest, resulting to labour unrest.
Finally, it is critical to recognise that when the government formulates policies that are unfavourable to labour unions, they adopt techniques or aspects that lead to labour unrest in the country.
(a) Labour unions threaten the government by giving an ultimatum within which their demands must be met. If the government does not comply, they may go on strike or demonstrate, resulting in labour unrest.
(a) Propaganda through mass media and handbills is another dimension of labour discontent; workers throughout the federation, as well as the general public, are kept up to date on the newest developments.
(c) Another facet of labour discontent that can be peaceful or violent is the use of protests, strikes, and demonstrations.
In economics, underdevelopment occurs when resources are not employed to their maximum socioeconomic potential, resulting in slower than expected local development. More specifically, it stems from the complex interaction of internal and external forces that allows less developed countries to progress at a lopsided pace.