NLC President, Abdulwaheed Omar
The Nigeria Labour Congress (NLC) has reiterated its call on the Federal Government to expedite action in the prosecution of oil subsidy beneficiaries without further delay.
The Congress noted that if government was committed to the enthronement of good governance and a corrupt-free society, it must get the named beneficiaries of the oil subsidy scam to not only refund all the money they have stolen, but also serve appropriate jail terms.
President of the NLC, Abdulwahed Omar, who made this call in a New Year message yesterday said government would be unfair to the Nigerian people if it failed to expeditiously prosecute those who have stolen so much, and caused so much trauma and death to the people.
According to him, this will be the only acceptable condition for continuous industrial harmony by workers and the Nigerian people.
“One of the positive outcomes of the January strike is the various probes that have been conducted on the issue of fuel subsidy. The revelations at those probe have vindicated the historical position of labour and civil society organisations that the downstream sector of the oil industry is enmeshed in unprecedented and horrendous corruption, and the rabid obsession of the ruling class to make the economy dependent on imported petroleum products was for the purpose of enriching themselves to the detriment of the Nigerian people.
“While we commend the heroic protests of workers and the Nigerian people we commend the National Assembly for their positive interventions. We hold the view that no one is above the law in any decent society and if our government is committed to the enthronement of good governance and a corrupt-free society, they must get the named beneficiaries of the oil subsidy scam to not only refund all the money they have stolen, but also serve appropriate jail terms,” Omar said.
Speaking further, the Congress President warned state governors who are yet to implement the new national minimum wage to do so adding that the singular act of not complying with the minimum wage law is an impeachable offence.
He said: “It is our resolve that the few states that are still reluctant to pay the minimum wage to some categories of workers will come under full focus by the labour movement. The struggle will no longer be left in the hands of the state councils, but handled in conjunction with the national leadership of the labour movement.”
Omar also expressed concern over the worsening security situation in the country stressing the need for government to handle the security challenges with more commitment and result-oriented actions by ensuring that law enforcement agencies are not only well equipped and efficient, but must be accountable to justify the confidence reposed in them to protect lives and property of the Nigerian people.
“The past year has been most challenging as Nigeria had her worst security problems. Several parts of the country were bombarded with bombs, most of them suicide bombs, especially in some parts of the North, as well as Abuja; in addition to rising cases of kidnappings in the southern part of the country.
“Cases of armed robbery, assassinations and extra judicial killings also rose in the year 2012. We believe the government need to handle these challenges with more commitment and result-oriented actions,” Omar added.