Fuel Subsidy: NLC shuns meeting with FG; TUC seeks pay rise
Leaders of the Nigeria Labour Congress, NLC, skipped a scheduled meeting with government officials yesterday to protest the removal of subsidy and subsequent over 200 percent increase in the price of petrol at the pump until the fuel price returns to its previous level.
Wednesday’s meeting between government officials and labour leaders ended in stalemate as a result of the Nigerian National Petroleum Corporation Limited’s (NNPCL) release of a petrol pump price template indicating a range of N488 to N557 per litre.
The meeting was scheduled to continue yesterday, but one of the NLC’s leaders told the newsmen that “government officials have been calling us, and we have told them bluntly that we will no longer meet with them until the price of petrol at the pump returns to its level prior to May 29.”
In other words, the price of petrol at the pump must return to its previous level in order to allow for negotiation and progress.
Nonetheless, leaders of the Trade Union Congress of Nigeria (TUC) met with government officials yesterday, but the meeting was inconclusive as both sides agreed to continue discussing the issue. In addition, they demanded a pay increase to mitigate the removal of the subsidy.
NLC mobilises for a strike Wednesday
Ahead of the planned nationwide indefinite strike beginning on Wednesday, the NLC has instructed its state councils and affiliates to ensure full mobilization of workers and civil society allies, among others, towards a total strike if the Federal Government does not reverse the pump price of petrol to pre-May 29 levels by tomorrow (Tuesday).
In a letter titled “Notice on mobilisation for nationwide withdrawal of service,” the NLC’s General Secretary, Emma Ugboaja, wrote: “Greetings from the leadership of the Nigeria Labour Congress.” You will recall that at the National Executive Council meeting held on June 2, 2023, it was decided that congress would launch a nationwide action and withdrawal of services in response to the fraudulent increase in fuel prices across all 36 states and the FCT of the Federal Republic of Nigeria.
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