MTN customers might face service disruption – telecom workers 

Nigeria’s largest telecom provider, MTN Nigeria, might see its service disrupted, a development that would impact consumers on the network negatively.

This development is based on the threat by aggrieved workers who picketed the Falomo, Lagos headquarters of the telecom operator.

The workers, under the aegis of the Private Telecommunications and Communications Senior Staff Association of Nigeria (PTECSSAN), accused MTN Nigeria of violating their rights as guaranteed under Labour laws. The workers’ grievances are MTN’s resistance to workers’ right to freedom of association, and freedom to organise and collective bargaining.

They also accused MTN of paying exit packages to its management staff but refusing to do the same to the lower cadre.

“Ultimately if they are still refusing like they have always been doing to sit down with us and negotiate, we can assure them that their network will have to be disrupted,” said Okonu Abdullahi, PTECSSAN’s general secretary.

“When you have a trade union, there must be a collective bargaining agreement, which is a pointer to the existence of the union in any organisation.

“But, MTN is running away from negotiating the CBA: the procedural agreement was signed and as a result of this, it escalated to the Ministry of Labour.

“A very good example which the management is running from is the exit benefits: how can workers be working for several number of years and you are not giving them terminal benefits

“We insisted as a responsible union that there must be an exit benefit. In the procedural agreement. It was agreed that no item should be exempted, but now to come to the table to start negotiating, MTN took off,” he said.

The protesters held placards that bear inscriptions such as “Workers Rights are Human Rights”; “Unionism is a Right and not a Privilege” and chanted solidarity songs.

Agency report