May 29, 2024

Following the strike notice given by the Nigeria Labour Congress (NLC) over the recent subsidy removal and its attendant hardships on Nigerians, the Senate, on Monday, resolved to interface between the Federal Government and the NLC in order to avert an intended strike.

The Senate resolution followed a motion titled “Urgent Need to Avert Intending Strike of the Nigeria Labour Congress” by Senator Kawu Suleiman AbdulRahman (NNPP Kano South) during plenary.

Presenting the motion, Senator AbdulRahman, noted that the NLC had given the federal government a seven-day ultimatum to reverse what the union termed “anti-poor policies” or face an indefinite nationwide strike starting Wednesday, August 2.

He added that the union had directed all its affiliates and state councils to immediately begin mobilising workers and other Nigerians, including civil society allies, for a long-lasting strike and protests.

Senator AbdulRahman informed that “the labour movement, in a statement signed by its national president, accused the federal government of failing to meet up with the demands presented to it following the subsidy removal on petrol, which caused an astronomical rise in the pump price of the commodity.”

He was worried that “the strike would cripple the country as movement would be severely curtailed as transport operators would withdraw their services, while markets, schools, and healthcare facilities would be forced to shut down.”

The lawmaker further warned: “The strike threat by the NLC, if not averted, could plunge Nigeria into deeper economic woes, dislocate businesses, cause hunger, frustration, and more hardship that would lead to unquantifiable financial losses and reduce Nigeria’s Growth Domestic Product, GDP.

“The NLC strike is also a bad reputation for the Nigerian economy and the educational system because it portrays the country in a bad light to the external world and discourages foreigners from coming to do business or study in Nigeria.

“The society always bears the brunt of strikes, like the saying that an idle hand is the devil’s workshop, an increase in crime rate, social vices like armed robbery, oil bunkering, prostitution, and cyber scams.”

In his remarks, Senate President Godswill Akpabio said that the federal government is not relenting in its efforts to alleviate the sufferings of the masses following the subsidy removal on petrol, calling on the local and state governments to always play complementary roles.

While calling for the understanding and support of Nigerians for the present administration, he declared that “98% of our monthly revenue cannot be used to pay subsidy on fuel.”

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