And it is time to stock up on necessities. On Saturday May 14, the Nigerian Labour Congress issued a warning to the Federal Government to revert the pump price of fuel from 145 naira to the former 86.50 or face a nationwide strike. That ultimatum will elapse tomorrow, Wednesday May 18 2016. However, the National Association of Aircraft Pilots and Engineers (NAAPE) declared on Saturday that it would not be joining the NLC strike as it has resolved to stand firmly support of the federal government’s resolve to fully deregulate the downstream sector of the Nigerian oil and gas industry.
As you already know if the NLC makes good its threat the country will completely shut down. In order to avoid hardship, you should immediately begin to stock up on basic necessities if you have not already done so.
Recall that in a joint press briefing granted in Abuja on Saturday, NLC, TUC, PENGASSEN, LACSCO, vowed to ground the country to a halt if the government fails to reverse the price of fuel.
The NLC President, Comrade Ayuba Wabba, said that
“After his election, President Muhammadu Buhari had maintained that there was no subsidy in the petroleum product price regime and that even if there was, he did not see how its removal would be beneficial to the ordinary Nigerian, noting that the slightest product price adjustment often leads to inflationary spiral and unimaginable suffering for the people;
The NLC president also said that “The Minister of State for Petroleum Resources, Dr Ibe Kachikwu had been speaking from both sides of his mouth. Whereas last year, he had strongly canvassed for the removal of “subsidy” in defiance of President Buhari, about a month ago, he claimed the subsidy had been removed through his ingenuity and that Nigeria was saving $1 billion from this process;
“Organized Labour wondered what has informed government’s sudden and dangerous policy somersault and its desperate attempt to convince the public that Labour was part of the decision that led to this price increase;
“In view of the fact that the board of the Petroleum Products Pricing Regulatory Agency (PPPRA), which is statutorily vested with powers to recommend prices, has not been reconstituted, the price variation announced by any officer of the agency or outside the agency is not only ultra vires and illegal, it is a criminal imposition on the citizenry;
“The price hike from N86:50 to N145, representing 67.63% increase, is the height of insensitivity and impunity as there was no previous consultation with stake holders, especially the organized labour, or any justification for this reckless decision other than the fact that government believes it is accountable to no one;
“The Minister of State for Petroleum Resources declared that marketers will have to source their dollars from the secondary market. The attendant pressure on the dollar will lead to unimaginable rise in prices of commodities and other services thus creating further hardship for the people.”
“In view of the fact that in the past five years, there has been no increase in salaries or wages or pensions in the face of devaluations, spiraling inflation and other vagaries of the economy, this product price increase is unrealistic, unaffordable, unacceptable and is thus rejected,” said the NLC president, comrade Ayuba Wabba.
Don’t be caught in the cold people. Stock up. And have a happy holiday.
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