Subsidy Removal: NLC, TUC suspend strike after meeting with FG

NLC agreed to suspend the notice of strike forthwith to enable further consultations as well as continue the ongoing engagements and secure closure on the resolutions.


The nationwide scheduled for Wednesday by Nigeria Labour Congress (NLC) and the Trade Union Congress (TUC) has been suspended by both bodies. This came after a meeting with the federal government on Monday night

The meeting between the federal government and the labour unions ended on Monday with a resolution to reconvene on June 19 to agree on implementation framework on resolutions reached.

Mr Femi Gbajabiamila, Speaker of the House of Representatives, who led the government side, disclosed this at the end of a meeting between labour and government representatives at the Presidential Villa, Abuja.

He said that the meeting agreed on a seven point resolution to cushion the effect of the subsidy removal on Premium Motor Spirit (PMS) on Nigerians.

“The Federal Government, the TUC and the NLC to establish a joint committee to review the proposal for any wage increase or award and establish a framework and timeline for implementation.

“The Federal Government, the TUC and the NLC to review World Bank Financed Cash transfer scheme and propose inclusion of low-income earners in the programme.

“The Federal Government, the TUC and the NLC to revive the CNG conversion programme earlier agreed with Labour centres in 2021 and work out detailed implementation and timing,” Gbajabiamila said.

BRANDPOWER reports that the Compressed natural gas (CNG) is a fuel gas mainly composed of methane, compressed to less than 1 per cent of the volume it occupies at standard atmospheric pressure.

It is the cleanest burning fuel operating today and brings about less vehicle maintenance and longer engine life.

Gbajabiamila added that meeting also agreed to review issues hindering effective delivery in the education sector and propose solutions for implementation.

Editor’s Picks  Forex Policy: AfDB lauds Tinubu, says will promote transparency

“The Labour centres and the Federal Government to review and establish the framework for completion of the rehabilitation of the nation’s refineries.

“The Federal Government to provide a framework for the maintenance of roads and expansion of rail networks across the country.

“All other demands submitted by the TUC to the Federal Government will be assessed by the joint committee.”

He stressed that the NLC agreed to suspend the notice of strike forthwith to enable further consultations as well as continue the ongoing engagements and secure closure on the resolutions.

The resolution was endorsed by the Presidents and Secretaries of the NLC and TUC, and Ms Kachollom Daju, Permanent Secretary of Ministry of Labour Employment.

The federal government had earlier obtained a court order restraining the Labour from embarking on a nationwide industrial action on Wednesday.

Court restrains NLC, TUC from embarking on planned strike

Meanwhile, the National Industrial Court on earlier on Monday granted an order restraining the Nigeria Labour Congress (NLC) and Trade Union Congress (TUC) from embarking on their planned Wednesday industrial action.

Justice Olufunke Anuwe also ordered that there should not be strike of any nature, pending the hearing and determination of the Motion on Notice dated June 5, 2023.

The court in addition ordered that the defendants be served immediately with the processes in the suit, the Motion on Notice and the order of the court.

The court further fixed the matter until June 19, for hearing.

From facts, the judge made the order sequel to an ex-parte application filed by the applicants, Federal Government and the Attorney-General of the Federation & Minister of Justice.

Editor’s Picks  Russian Electric Car coy on partnership drive with Nigeria, Africa

The applicants had submitted that the proposed strike action is capable of disrupting economic activities, the health sector and the educational sector.

They claim that the strike may gravely affect the larger society and the well-being of the nation at large.

Counsel to FG, Maimuna Shiru also submitted that students of secondary schools nationwide, especially those writing WAEC exams will be affected and that the Tertiary institutions who just resumed after eight months ASUU strike will also be affected.

The application also stated that the strike will affect the health sector amongst other sectors; and above all, the economy of the nation.

The respondents have declared that they will embark on nationwide strike on Wednesday to protest the fuel subsidy removal that brought about the new pump price for the Premium Motor Spirit.

Also, the Nigeria Labour Congress (NLC), Ebonyi Chapter, has said the authorities should have listened to the poor masses before the removal of Fuel Subsidy.

Prof Oguguo Egwu, the state chairman of the Congress, made the remark in on Monday in Abakaliki.

BRANDPOWER recalls that President Bola Tinubu had announced the end of fuel subsidy regime in the country during his inaugural speech.

BRANDPOWER also recalls that organised labour, in a meeting on June 2, called on the federal government to revert to the status quo and fixed Wednesday to embark on strike.

Egwu maintained that the Congress is insisting that the federal government should revert to the status quo of the pump price before negotiations ahead of Wednesday’s proposed Strike.

Editor’s Picks  Benin independence anniversary: We’ll collaborate for our citizens’ benefits, says Tinubu

He decried the sufferings occasioned by the subsidy removal and urged the federal government to re-instate the subsidy regime for the interest of the citizens.

“NLC and all its affiliate members are ready to embark on the strike, and this is a total withdrawal of services nationwide.

“In Ebonyi, we are ready and mobilisation of workers have commenced. We enjoined the general public to support the action because this will lead to the reversal to the ld fuel pump price regime.

“The increase has led to the suffering of the masses. Imagine paying N550 per a litre of fuel in Ebonyi here. Go back to the status quo and let us have room for negotiation. There is need to listen to the poor.

“The federal government can do it without inflicting injury on citizens. Make sure that the people are not suffering. Have the interest of the masses at heart and not to cause injury on them,” the Chairman added.

Also speaking with NAN, Prof Ikechukwu Igwenyi, Chairman, Academic Staff Union  of Universities (ASUU) branch of Ebonyi State University, pointed out that government policies should serve the interest of citizens.

“Well, there is nothing wrong removing the subsidy, but there must be palliative to cushion the effect of subsidy.

“You don’t just remove it just like that. Do it for the interest of the masses. There is need to revert to the status quo and labour unions can go to the round table. The people must understand the subsidy regime before removing it,” he advised.