The Trade Union Congress (TUC) has issued a warning if the Federal Government fails to meet its deadline for developing solid palliatives to mitigate the impact of gasoline subsidy reduction on Nigerian residents.
On Monday, July 25, TUC President Festus Osifo told the press in Abuja that the Federal Government had stated that it would take 8 weeks to find ways to mitigate the negative consequences of the elimination of fuel subsidies.
According to Osifo, the time allocated elapses by August 19 if nothing is done by that day, and if nothing is done by that date, the Union will have no alternative but to take action to defend Nigerians from the government.
Focus on cutting governance costs
While addressing the press, Osifo also said that after the fuel subsidy was removed, the Union was called in to have conversations with the Federal Government and several committees have been set up to address the cost of governance, cash transfers for Nigerians as well as providing alternatives to petrol, and refinery rehabilitation.
However, focusing on the cost of governance, Osifo said the government needs to ensure that they are making the same sacrifice that the masses are currently experiencing. He said:
- “We have exceeded the belt holes while those in government have continuously increased their largesse. They must lead by example, the executive, legislative and judiciary arms government must lead from the front and Nigerians will follow them from behind.
- “But a situation they are pushing a lot Nigerians into poverty line while they are living in opulence, we will not allow that to happen If the National Assembly cannot give clear-cut justification of what they doing, we will lead the entire Nigerian masses to besiege the chambers because for us we think that injury to one is an injury to all.”
According to Osifo, the solutions provided by the Tinubu-led government should include three objectives:
- Reduction in the cost of governance
- Cheaper energy alternatives like compressed natural gas (CNG)
- Palliatives to ease the economic burden on Nigerians
Did you should know?
On July 18, the President of the Nigeria Labour Congress (NLC), the CNG agreement, if already in place would have created a cheaper alternative (N100/litre) for poor Nigerians who do not have the luxury of paying for fuel at higher prices.
However, the further increase in fuel pump prices while the CNG agreement is still being consummated is an affront to Nigerians.