NLC Vows To Resist Fuel Subsidy Removal

The Nigeria Labour Congress (NLC) has restated its resolve to oppose any attempt by the Federal Government to remove subsidy on petroleum products, tasking the government to ensure that fuel pumps across the country dispense petrol at the approved pump price.
In a statement signed by its Acting President, Comrade Kiri Mohammed, NLC said the President Muhammadu Buhari administration must take charge of the situation and declare a state of emergency in the sector.
The congress lamented that in a nation that produces crude oil, scarcity of the petroleum products has been allowed to linger for four months, while those accused of mismanaging subsidy on petroleum products are still walking the streets free without facing prosecution.
The statement reads: “The current scarcity of petroleum products has entered the fourth month and a credible solution is yet to be provided other than media reports of promises to end the crisis. A crisis that had already further slowed down our national economy and caused hardships to many families and homes, with workers, both in the formal and informal sectors being the most hit.
“It has become extremely difficult for workers to get to work because of the perpetual scarcity of petroleum products, which has burdened their salaries as they now have to pay exorbitant transport fares to commute to work, even as majority of them have not received salaries in months.
“This has become worse as public transportation networks are scarce due to unavailability of fuel, and this might cause workers to stop resuming at work.
“While we appreciate the fact that the present government is new, it is important that it takes full control of the situation and declare an emergency that will ensure the pumps at all fuel stations across the country are selling effectively, and at the official price of N87 per litre.
“Government must not allow itself to be blackmailed, not even by petroleum marketers, to abandon the delivery of goods and services that help our economy out of prevailing doldrums’. The unavailability of petroleum products and lack of electricity are some of the reasons our economy is down and any serious government must direct serious attention to these.
“While we commend the present administration for taking firm steps at confronting the prevalent terror attacks in some parts of the country, we urge government to also see the scarcity of petroleum products as yet another major challenge that must not be treated with kid gloves.
“This scarcity must end and the government must do much more to ensure it ends, otherwise our economy will sure suffer higher damages”.