The strike action by the Kaduna State chapter of the Nigeria Labour Congress (NLC) has commenced as patients were being sent out of their hospital beds as workers embarked on a five-day warning strike on Monday.
When LEADERSHIP visited Sabo General Hospital in Kaduna, the wards were empty while relatives of patients with complicated health challenges were seen stranded and in dilemma.
They lamented that their relatives were abandoned by hospital workers.
A union member told LEADERSHIP at the hospital that offices of medical doctors and nurses were under lock and key.
Speaking to LEADERSHIP at the General Hospital in Sabo Tasha, a relative of one of the patients, who only identified herself as Anna, urged the state government to meet the demands of NLC and re-recall the sacked workers.
“We need more staff in the hospitals. In all the days that we’ve been here, the hospital had shortage of staff. The government should please reconsider its earlier decision,” Anna said.
Also, Jethro Hosea, said he was stranded at the hospital, adding that he didn’t know where to take his sick uncle to.
“This is someone very sick. I can’t carry him home in this condition,” Hosea said.
Even though there are vehicular movement in the state, the train and air services have been shutdown.
LEADERSHIP gathered that hundreds of people that bought the train ticket for the Kaduna – Abuja trip were turned back on Monday as a result of the strike action.
The train fare is non-refundable after a stipulated time but sources at the train station said the Nigerian Railway Corporation (NRC) may reconsider its stand following the new development.
LEADERSHIP reports that the NLC five-day warning strike was to compel the Kaduna State governor, Malam Nasir el-Rufai, to reverse the sack of over 4,000 workers in the state.
According to the NLC national president, Ayuba Waba, the Kaduna State government has embarked on an anti-labour policies adding that the union will ground the state until the government reverse its decision.
But the state government has also insisted that it will not succumb to blackmail, adding that it will not reverse it decision.
All fuel stations are closed down in Kaduna metropolis while the Kaduna Electricity Distribution Company (KEDC) has shutdown all their transmission lines in the state, a development that has plunged the state into a total blackout since Sunday.