NLC President Joe Ajaero Arrested in Owerri; Organized Labour Warns of Nationwide Strike

The President of the Nigeria Labour Congress (NLC), Joe Ajaero, has been arrested in Owerri, prompting warnings of a potential nationwide strike from organized labor. The arrest took place as Ajaero was reportedly preparing for an 'Occupy Imo' protest. The NLC leader's detainment has raised concerns and calls for his release. This development has put the labor community on high alert for possible collective action across the country

Nigeria Labour Congress President Joe Ajaero Arrested in Owerri.

In a surprising turn of events, Joe Ajaero, the President of the Nigeria Labour Congress (NLC), was apprehended by Nigerian Police Force operatives in Owerri, the capital of Imo State. He was taken into custody from the NLC State Council Secretariat by heavily armed police officers. Although the exact location of his detainment remains undisclosed, the Head of Media at NLC Headquarters, Benson Uper, confirmed the arrest through a WhatsApp message, clarifying that Ajaero was taken into custody at the NLC's secretariat in Imo State.


Reports suggest that Ajaero was arrested while preparing to lead an 'Occupy Imo' protest scheduled for the same day. The police cited Ajaero's alleged disobedience of an existing court order from the National Industrial Court, which prohibited the NLC and the Trades Union Congress (TUC) from organizing any protests within the state.

While there has been no official statement from the Imo State police command, an inside source stated that Ajaero is currently in protective custody. The source revealed that a confrontation ensued between NLC members from Abuja and local workers in Imo who expressed discontent with Ajaero's actions. In response, the police intervened to safeguard the NLC President from potential harm.

Meanwhile, Organised Labour has issued a nationwide alert, threatening immediate collective action if Ajaero is not released by the end of the day. In a joint statement by the NLC and TUC following Ajaero's arrest, they accused Imo State Governor Hope Uzodimma and the Imo State Commissioner of Police of unlawfully detaining the NLC leader. The statement emphasized that workers cannot resume regular duties while their President remains in custody. Organised Labour further called on President Bola Tinubu to intervene and address the escalating situation in Imo State, cautioning against the transformation of the state into a hub of violence and lawlessness.

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