Nigeria Labour Congress Asserts Constitutional Right to Peaceful Rallies Amidst Contempt Allegations

The Nigeria Labour Congress (NLC) has responded to the Solicitor-General of the Federation and Permanent Secretary, Ministry of Justice, refuting any court order restraining Nigerian workers from participating in peaceful rallies organized by the NLC. In a letter from Falana chambers, the NLC reminded the Federal Government of the subsisting judgment that upholds the right to demonstrate and protest on matters of public concern, as long as no wrongful act is committed.

The letter was issued in light of the proposed protest by organized labor on August 2, protesting the removal of fuel subsidy and its impact on Nigerians. The NLC emphasized that peaceful rallies are constitutional rights, not classified as industrial actions, and should not be seen as contempt of court.

Citing the case of Inspector-General of Police v All Nigeria Peoples Party, the NLC reinforced the fundamental right of Nigerians to protest without police permits, underlining that freedom of speech and assembly are essential democratic rights. The NLC urged the government to ensure security during the rallies, as required by the Police Establishment Act 2020.

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