A support group of the ruling All Progressives Congress on Thursday appealed to the Nigeria Labour Congress and Trade Union Congress to reconsider their stance on the planned nationwide strike in the interest of the country.
The development is coming in the wake of Labour Party’s resolve to mobilise their supporters to join the industrial action, saying the Presidency has been insensitive to the plight of Nigerian workers.
Both the NLC and TUC had threatened to ground activities nationwide from October 3 following the failure of the Federal Government to successfully implement policies to alleviate the sufferings of the masses in the aftermath of the fuel subsidy removal.
Among other things, the Organised Labour is asking for wage awards, implementation of palliatives, tax exemptions and allowances to public sector workers and a review of the minimum wage.
Reacting in a statement issued in Abuja on Thursday, National Coordinator of National Progressive Hub, Bukie Okangbe, pleaded with the union leaders to give the federal government the benefit of doubt in restructuring the economic framework of the country.
She said, “As a support group of the APC, we are pleading with our labour leaders to reconsider their stand on the planned indefinite strike so as to continue their engagement with the government. It has been proven overtime that instead of positive results, strike action in Nigeria has always yielded negative impacts on not only the economy but also on the welfare of the citizens. We must consider the possible negative effects of the strike on sensitive sectors like health, security, education among others..
“We understand the labour leaders have already threatened to go on a nationwide indefinite strike over the fuel subsidy removal starting from the 3rd of October, 2023. We believe that they can shelve this planned strike action and allow for a continued engagement with the federal government on the issue. The National Progressive Hub is confident that President Bola Ahmed Tinubu is highly committed to addressing the issues and concerns raised by labour leaders regarding the fuel subsidy removal. As a progressive and listening leader, he has already approved the sum of N5bn to each state as palliative to ease the burden of the subsidy removal.
“The president, upon removal of the fuel subsidy, immediately constituted a committee on the upward review of the minimum wage. It is expected that a new minimum wage would be announced soon by the federal government. Tinubu has also been engaging with international communities at every opportunity to making sure that they increase their foreign investment in Nigeria as a country with high economic prospect.
“Of course, some of these international engagements have started yielding results as some foreign investors have already indicated interest to invest billions of dollars in Nigeria’s economy in different sectors.”