Subsidy Protest: Labour, FG Resume Dialogue

Subsidy Protest: Labour, FG Resume Dialogue

The Organised Labour says it has resumed dialogue with the Federal Government (FG) to allow full implementation of its pledge and commitment to the removal of fuel subsidy.

Mr Joe Ajaero, President of Nigeria Labour Congress (NLC), said this in a statement jointly signed with Mr Festus Osifo, President, Trade Union Congress (TUC), on Wednesday in Abuja.

It would be recalled that the NLC and TUC had embarked on a mass nationwide protest over anti-poor and anti-workers policies of the Federal Government. Ajaero said that it was pertinent to inform Nigerians that the extent of the success of the protest was underlined by the request of  President Bola Tinubu to meet with the leadership of organised labour at a closed-door session.

He said the engagement with Tinubu was fruitful as immense mileage was obtained with regards to the issues that bogged down the work of the Presidential Committee on Subsidy Removal and necessitated the protest.

According to him, the president said he was committed to an immediate restructuring of the framework for engagement in line with the input of the labour leaders. “He let out a certainty that the Port Harcourt Refinery will commence production by December this year.

“He pledged to ensure that an Agreement is reached on the Wage Award for Nigerian workers immediately. He promised to unveil a workable roadmap to the CNG alternative next week.

“On the strength of the President’s pledge and commitment, we have decided for a return to a new and reinvigorated dialogue process to allow for full implementation,” the statement read in part. >>> Naira Devaluation Deepens Economic Crisis in Nigeria

The NLC president however said that organised labour had received a Court summons purporting to charge it with contempt of Court over the protest.

He therefore directed all workers to resume at the Courts wherever they may be across the nation on the days of the Court sittings to hear the contempt proceedings against the leaders of trade unions.

“The airports, the seaports, the hospitals, schools; all public and private sector workers will all appear in Court across the nation in response to the Contempt charges,” he urged. He commended the leadership of the National Assembly for their timely intervention and pledge to resolve the issues raised by the Nigerian people.

He also lauded them for their deep understanding of the need for government to provide quick wins as succour with short timelines to ameliorate the consequences of the hike in the price of Premium Motor Spirit (PMS) on the citizenry.