TUC Mobilises Members for Strike against Fuel Subsidy Removal

0

Onyebuchi Ezigbo

The Trade Union Congress (TUC) has directed its state chapters to mobilise their members for a nationwide strike if federal government goes ahead to remove fuel subsidy without meeting the conditions set by the union.

As part of the resolutions reached at its National Executive Council (NEC) meeting held yesterday in Abuja, the union urged the government to review the privatisation of the power sector since the contracts had expired to ensure viability, job security and effectiveness of the sector.

The union said that the proposal by National Council of State on the final removal of subsidy on petrol as from June 2022 should take into consideration the attendant economic impact on the masses.

TUC insisted that refineries should be fully overhauled, while the establishment of modular refineries should be encouraged.

It also called on federal and state governments to put in place measures to ameliorate the suffering of the people through food security and infrastructural development.

In the communiqué issued at the end of the NEC meeting, the union said that it deliberated on the various issues among which was the state of the nation and observed with serious concern the worrisome economic situation and the rising cost of living.

On the issue of proposed removal fuel subsidy, the union said: “It has mandated the congress led by the President to take all necessary steps to ensure that these conditions are met before subsidy is removed. “Consequently, NEC-in-Session directs state councils and affiliates to commence mobilisation of members for industrial actions against subsidy removal without Government fulfilling conditions precedent,” according to the communique.

The President of the TUC, Comrade Quadri Olaleye who read the communiqué, said that NEC has directed state chapters to commence mobilisation of members for a strike if the federal fails to meet conditions set by the workers.

He noted that TUC acknowledged the giant stride in rice production through various interventions of the Buhari’s administration, and called on the federal government to ensure that the price of rice in the market becomes affordable to the common man to justify the rice revolution policy of the administration.

The TUC President further said that the federal government must exhibit political will in its economic diversification programmes with a major focus on agricultural production.
According to the TUC, the development of the agricultural value chain can create mass employment and put the country on the path of economic recovery and prosperity.

The union urged the federal government to immediately review the privatisation of the power sector since the contracts have expired.

Part of the communiqué reads: “NEC-in-Session insists that federal government must ensure that the conditions precedent put forward by the TUC on the deregulation of the downstream such as; the revitalization of existing refineries, establishment of new ones including modular refineries and effective policing of borders to stem the rate of petroleum products smuggling are implemented.”.

The union also called on its members nationwide to obtain their Permanent Voters Cards (PVCs) and ensure active participation in the democratic process ahead of the 2023 general election.
Members of the union were also urged to support the Political Commission of the Congress in creating groundswell awareness for providing leadership alternatives that deliver on democratic dividends and transformative governance to the people.

“Finally, NEC-in-Session has mandated the Congress led by the President to take all necessary steps to ensure that these conditions are met before subsidy is removed. “Consequently, NEC-in-session directs state councils and affiliates to commence mobilisation of members for industrial actions against subsidy removal without government fulfilling conditions precedent,” the communiqué added.