Security Barricades National Assembly, Restricts Access to striking workers

By Ochai Sunday

Security officials notably the men of the Nigeria police and Department of States Security Services, DSS have blocked the entrance of the National Assembly, preventing staff, journalists and others from entering the complex.

The security men, who took strategic positions from the State House entrance, prevented whoever that attempted to enter the gate of the legislative premises.

This action is a result of a directive by the leadership of the National Assembly who asked the operatives of the State Security Services (SSS) and the police to secure the chamber for plenary.

The move, according to a statement by the Clerk to the National Assembly, Mohammed Sani-Omolori is to “enable members and staff come in and perform their legitimate duties without any hindrances.”

Workers of the National Assembly under the umbrella body of Parliamentary Staff Association of Nigeria (PASAN) on Monday prevented staff of the complex from working in protest of what they called poor working conditions.

A similar protest was held two weeks ago when the workers demanded pay rise, promotions trainings among other things.

The Monday protest follows a four-day warning strike that commenced on Monday.

The strike may affect President Muhammadu Buhari’s presentation of the 2019 Appropriation Bill to the joint National Assembly on Wednesday.

On Tuesday, hundreds of staff of the assembly were seen in front of the complex stranded.

When approached, officials of the Nigeria Police allowed some journalist to enter the complex after an initial turn back.

However, other police officers situated about 50 meters from the gate, however, turned the reporter back telling him he ‘has no business here.’

It is not yet clear whether the lawmakers would be allowed entry for today’s plenary as requested by the assembly leadership.

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