Subsidy: Talks with FG resume today as NLC threatens nationwide strike

Subsidy: Talks with FG resume today as NLC threatens nationwide strike

The Nigeria Labour Congress has stated that the government must meet its requests ahead of today’s (Monday) meeting between the federal government and organized labour.

The union warned that it will not hesitate to return to its earlier suspended strike action should nothing positive come out of today’s talks.

It noted that the high cost of petrol was causing unimaginable suffering for Nigerians, noting that the government must move quickly to provide palliatives, as the NLC suggested an increase in the minimum wage from N30,000 to N150,000 and N200,000

Adewale Adeyanju, vice-president of the National Labour Congress, while speaking with the Punch newspaper stated that labour unions had submitted numerous proposals, emphasizing that the government should not play games.

He said, “There are a lot of things that labour has been putting before the government. The refineries need to be revamped. We cannot continue to import refined petroleum products and be spending on subsidies all the time.

“Labour has its set of demands and by the time we meet with the government tomorrow we will list them out again.”

He added, “You know we only suspended our strike as a result of the need to meet on this.

“So the government should know that things are becoming difficult and they (the government) should not decide to do anything funny. The strike was only suspended. It was an ultimatum that was given out and it (strike) was suspended.

“So let’s hear what the government has for us and then we will know what to tell our members. It is about the lives of the people. Let’s meet them tomorrow and then labour will come out with its position.”

Adeyanju, on the other hand, expressed confidence that the meeting would be constructive and maintained that the NLC did not want the government to act inappropriately.

“We hope that the meeting is going to be fruitful. The expectations are very high. The nation is watching and people are looking at how the Nigeria Labour Congress is going to handle the situation.

“And the government too will not like to behave funny because they know the country is battling with the increase in fuel pump price and so many things,” he stated.

Recall that the Federal Government and Labour unions met on June 5, 2023, with a resolution to reconvene on June 19 to agree on the framework for implementing some of the resolutions after the Trade Union Congress and Nigeria Labour Congress threatened to go on strike following the decision of the Federal Government to stop the payment of subsidy on fuel.

Organised labour in the country argued that President Bola Ahmed Tinubu could not unilaterally take a decision on subsidy removal without proper consultations and provision of palliatives to cushion the effects on Nigerians.

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