Democratic Socialist Movement

For Struggle, Solidarity and Socialism in Nigeria

By - DSM

EXTREME MANUFACTURING LIMITED: Protesting Casual workers attacked and arrested by Operation Burst again

CDWR condemns the arrest, demands immediate release and cautions against continued attacks on democratic rights

Bamigboye Abiodun (Abbey Trotsky) speaking at the Extreme Manufacturing workers’ protest

The attention of the Campaign for Democratic and Workers Rights (CDWR) has been drawn to the new attack and arrest of the casual workers of Extreme Manufacturing Nigeria Limited, Ibadan, who have been on protest since Saturday, 8th January, 2022 against poor pay and indecent labour practices.

The protesting workers were arrested in the early hours of today, Thursday, 13th January, 2022, by the officers of Operation Burst, during their peaceful protest for an improvement in their pay and working condition. This is the second time the officers of Operation Burst have unleashed this kind of attack on the poor protesting workers.

The first attack was on Saturday, 8th January, 2022 during which the workers were beaten, brutalised and seven of them arrested though released after 24hours having been reportedly forced to Pay N5000 each. The company management hired the service of Operation Burst to repress the protest allegedly after the DPO Idi-Ayunre police station earlier invited had declined the request.

Extreme Manufacturing Nigeria limited, is a company known for the production of soup called Easy Soup. It is situated at Esuoso Village, near Alomaja, along Ijebu-Ode Road, Ibadan. It reportedly perpetrates different forms of indecent labour practices and violation of labour act. These include engagement of workers without any form of terms of employment. The company often takes advantage of this to force the poor workers to work for 12hours for a daily pay of N1700 without right to break or access basic health care services within and outside the company. Other indecent labour practices include the use of children between the age of 14 and 16 years old as casual workers.

It was the accumulated anger among the workers against all of these anti-workers practices that culminated into the lingering peaceful protest that broke out in the company on Saturday, 8th January, 2022.

The CDWR condemns both the first and new attacks on the protesting poor Casual workers. It is a violation of the right of the protesting workers to a peaceful assembly and freedom of expression. We call for the release of all the arrested workers who are still in the operation burst detention and demand a refund of the N5,000 allegedly collected from those who were released. We call on the company to meet the demands of the protesting workers

Again, CDWR cautions against a repeat of this undemocratic conduct by officers of Operation Burst and demand immediate arrest and prosecution of all of the officers who were involved in this kind of illegal and undemocratic operation.

We also call on the Oyo state leaderships of the Nigeria Labour Congress, NLC, and Trade Union Congress, TUC, to support the demands stated above with an immediate practical intervention in the plight and struggle of casual workers of Extreme Manufacturing Limited with a view to commence a campaign against casualization, other forms of indecent labour practices and violation of labour laws in factories and workplaces across the state.

Bamigboye Abiodun (Abbey Trotsky)

CDWR Oyo State Coordinator

E-mail: [email protected]