Nigerians’ Peace of Mind Lost over Fuel Subsidy Removal, NLC Threatens Strike

The NLC has threatened a nationwide strike due to the removal of fuel subsidies, causing peace of mind to be a scarce commodity for Nigerians.

Peace of mind has become a scarce commodity for the average Nigerian since the delivery of President Bola Tinubu’s speech on May 29, 2023.

The Nigeria Labour Congress (NLC) has voiced out that the citizens have been restive since the President’s ominous declaration that fuel subsidies are to be permanently phased out.

Government’s Indifference: A Growing Concern

The Federal Government’s unfriendly policies have caused deep consternation and despair, treating Nigerians poorly, akin to slaves.

This claim was substantiated in a communiqué jointly signed by the NLC’s National President, Joe Ajaero, and Secretary-General, Emmanuel Ugboaja, on July 26, 2023.

The document aired the grievances of the workers’ union and revealed the outcome of their Central Working Committee (CWC) meeting.

Declaration of War on Nigerian Workers

The NLC noted with dismay the Federal Government’s disdainful attitude towards the Nigerian populace.

The government, in a sense, declared an open war on Nigerian workers and the masses by acting with callous disregard for their welfare.

The NLC states, “The government seems to have left Nigerians to wallow in the throes of hopelessness and helplessness.”

Failed Safeguards and Broken Promises

Instead of implementing safeguards against the harsh economic consequences of its policies, the government has chosen palliative measures for Nigerians.

An offer of N8,000 per family, while allocating a whopping N70bn for themselves, is seen as an insult to the sensibilities of the Nigerian masses.

Frustration and Despair: The New Normal

The declaration that the subsidy is forever gone on the inauguration day led to an unprecedented surge of frustration and despair.

The government continues to treat Nigerians with impunity, as if they are conquered people.

The hike in prices of Premium Motor Spirit (PMS) to N617 per litre is viewed as a devious plot to rob the poor to enrich the wealthy.

The Elite Conspiracy and the NNPCL Controversy

The NLC also noted the persistent efforts of the Federal Government to promote an elitist conspiracy against the Nigerian populace.

The government’s unrelenting push for increases in VAT, PMS prices, and school fees across public secondary and tertiary institutions of learning signifies this trend.

Furthermore, the Nigerian National Petroleum Company Limited (NNPCL) has usurped the role of market forces, fixing petroleum product prices while claiming to advocate for deregulation.

Breach of Trust and Nationwide Strike Threat

Amidst an outpouring of support from Nigerians, the NLC urges Congress to organize a national strike.

Their demands include the reversal of anti-poor policies, reduction in public school fees, release of withheld salaries for university lecturers and workers, and the inauguration of the Presidential Steering Committee.

Unless the demands are met within seven days, the NLC threatens a nationwide strike on August 2, 2023, to compel the government to reverse its anti-poor and anti-workers policies.

Nigerians’ peace of mind is threatened by the government’s insensitivity to their welfare, characterized by unfriendly policies and disregard for the populace.

Lack of prompt action could escalate this situation into a nationwide strike, straining the country’s socio-economic fabric.

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What is the reason for the planned nationwide strike?

The strike is a response to the government’s perceived anti-poor and anti-workers policies, particularly the removal of fuel subsidies and increases in public school fees.

What is the stance of the Nigeria Labour Congress on the fuel subsidy removal?

The NLC is opposed to the removal of fuel subsidies, viewing it as a policy that harms the average Nigerian worker and their family.

When is the nationwide strike scheduled to commence?

The strike starts on August 2, 2023, unless the government meets the NLC’s demands within seven days.

What is the demand of the NLC?

The NLC demands include the reversal of anti-poor policies, a decrease in public school fees, the release of withheld salaries of university lecturers and workers, and the inauguration of the Presidential Steering Committee.

What was the impact of President Bola Tinubu’s May 29, 2023, speech?

The President’s speech, declaring the permanent removal of the fuel subsidy, caused considerable consternation and disrupted the peace of mind among Nigerians.

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