Newspaper vendors embark on indefinite strike

The Newspapers Vendors Association, Anambra state chapter has, embarked on an indefinite strike, News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) is reporting.

The association on Monday at Awka in a petition says their decision was a result of harassment they face from the state officials who humiliate and harass them at all time.

A NAN reporter who was at vendors’ stands at the Nnamdi Azikiwe University Awka junction and Aroma, opposite Fire Service, said there was no vendor seen.  

The Association in its petition to the state government, signed by its Chairman, Mr. Emeka Nweze and the Secretary, Mr. Ifeanyi Nwafor, say they are embarking on strike as a result of excess harassment and intimidation from government task force officials.

They accused Operation Clean and Healthy Anambra State (OCHA) officials of harassing and extorting money from their members.

 “Newspaper distributors and vendors have been passing through a nightmare in the hands of the officials of OCHA Brigade for a long time’’ the association said.

“The officials have been clamping down on our members, intimidating and harassing us, seizing the items we use in the display of our newspapers and at times extorting money from us.’’

This is even as it says its members are operating in locations approved for them by the state government and wondered why state officials will continually harass and intimidate their members.  

It also accused the state officials of seizing newspapers valued more than N70, 000 from vendors in the last three months.

They have since said they will no longer operate pending when the state government guarantees them of their safety.

A NAN reporter was told by Miss Nneka Okeke, a vendor at Aroma Junction, although newspaper publishers supplied papers to vendors, they refused to sell because they are on strike.  

Mr. Don Adinuba, the Anambra Commissioner for Information and Public Enlightenment while confirming the development said he will ensure the dispute is resolved as quickly as possible.

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