The National Labour Congress (NLC) seeks to continue with its fuel subsidy protests, even in the face of opposition[this was 30/7/23]. The Trade Union Congress (TUC) also joined in, calling for a nationwide protest against what they see as the Federal Government’s unfavourable policies. In a statement, TUC President Festus Osifo and General Secretary Nuhu Toro have directed affiliates and state councils to mobilize their members by midnight on August 1, 2023.
All affiliated organizations and state councils under the Trade Union Congress of Nigeria (TUC) were thereby instructed to ready their members for a nationwide protest. The TUC unequivocally supported the elimination of subsidies but demands the implementation of sufficient measures.
- “The congress is not averse to the removal of subsidy; we support the fact that it has to be removed but there must be measures in place to ameliorate its effect on Nigerians.
- “Such measures include fixing of the refineries and possibly building more; functional transportation system; living wage, good medical facilities and employment.
They added that the Policy was not properly thought through and is bringing pain to Nigerians, they said:
- “The policy was not thought through which is why its impact is excruciating on Nigerians.
- “Therefore, all affiliates and state councils of Congress are hereby directed to mobilise their members for action by midnight of today, Aug. 1, 2023,“ the union said.
NLC debunks suspension of its planned nationwide protest
The Nigeria Labour Congress (NLC) affirms that its nationwide protest, set to commence on Wednesday, will proceed as planned, despite rumours of a possible suspension. The NLC strongly urges Nigerians to disregard these reports and reiterates that it will not back down on its mass action against the recent hike in petrol pump prices and exchange rate unification. NLC’s National President, Joe Ajaero, condemned the rumours as the work of “fifth columnists” in a statement released on Tuesday evening. Although the union met with the Federal Government, the protest is still scheduled to hold in major cities across the country. The controversy over a possible suspension of the nationwide protest may have been caused by a report that claimed the Secretary-General of the NLC, Emmanuel Ugboaja, suggested a reconsideration of the Congress’s stance on the proposed strike action during an earlier briefing with journalists.
NLC to Suspend Protest
The Special Adviser to President Tinubu on communication and strategy, Mr. Dele Alake has said Labour union leaders led by its President Comrade Joe Ajaero have resolved to suspend the ongoing protest on the subsidy removal after a fruitful meeting with President Tinubu this evening.
- He disclosed this via a statement made available to the press at the statehouse this evening. Mr. Alake said “Consequent upon the fruitful and frank discussion with President Tinubu and their confidence in his ability to encourage open and honest consideration of all the issues put forward by the Labour Movement, the Labour Leaders resolved to stop further protest.”
Labour leaders settle for dialogue
He also noted that the Labour leaders settled for continuous dialogue with the federal government to resolve issues affecting working Nigerians.
Going further Mr Alake noted the President’s commitment to continue to work for the interest of the Nigerian people.
- The statement reads, “President Tinubu assured the Labour leaders that he would continue to work for the best interest of Nigeria while pleading with the Labour leaders to join hands with him to birth a better and economically buoyant country.”
Port-Harcourt refinery to begin production by December
The President’s special adviser also used the opportunity to inform Nigerians that the Port Harcourt refinery which is under maintenance will begin production by December of this year.
- He said, “President Tinubu gave his commitment to the Labour leaders that the Port Harcourt refineries will start production by December 2023 after the completion of the ongoing rehabilitation contract between NNPCL and Italian firm, Maire Tecnimont SpA.”