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Fuel Subsidy: FG, Labour Talks End In Deadlock

…..Reverse Fuel Subsidy Removal, Labour Insists

(AFRICAN EXAMINER) – After hours of deliberation on Wednesday between the Federal Government and Labour Unions in the country over removal of fuel subsidy, both sides could not reach a decision.

Spokesperson of the government side, Mr. Dele Alake, said deliberations on the matter would continue at a later date.

Alake while speaking to Journalists after the meeting said, “we cannot finish everything at one sitting, so we have adjourned now, we are continuing the talks at a later date very shortly”

“We have been deliberating on finding a very amicable solution to the issue at hand, to the queues and all of that and the increase in pump price.

“We had a very robust engagement. We cross-fertilised ideas, ideas flew from all sides and there is one thing that is remarkable even from the labour side, and that is Nigeria”, he stated. 

“We are all looking at the peace, progress and stability of Nigeria. That is what is paramount. 

“Of course, the NNPCL CEO is here, Mr. Kyari, we cannot go into details now because the talks are still ongoing. We cannot finish everything at one sitting, so we have adjourned now, we are continuing the talks at a later date very shortly” 

“But the point is that the talks are ongoing and it always better for all sides to keep talking with a view to arriving at a very amicable resolution that will be in the longer term interest for all Nigerians. That is as much as we can say now”, Alake added

President of the Trade Union Congress (TUC), Comrade Festus Osifo said that Tinubu in his inaugural address had said the hallmark of his administration would be dialogue and consultation.

According to Osifo, what this means is that “they are not going to lord it over us. I am trying to paraphrase what he said, that he is not going to be a dictator. And what has happened has not shown what was written in his address”

” So, all we said before now was that we ought to have sat down, have this conversation before anything could have happened.

“We have been open to conversations, we started it in 2020 up to 2021, up to part of 2022. But at the end of the day, they told us that they were not removing subsidy”, Osifo added. 

“So, there was no conversation whatsoever, so for over a year, there wasn’t formal engagements and formal meetings because there wasn’t formal engagements and formal meetings that is why we found ourselves in this. 

“If we had met before now, we would have proposed a lot of things. We have experts in our midst who could have proffered solutions, even the CNG how it could have been done faster. Because our own is, how do we protect the Nigerian people and the workforce.

“So, it’s not about grandstanding but it’s about how do we protect the workforce. Clearly, we have stated in our meeting today let status quo ante remains, while we go back and have conversations with our principal, because the workers are our principal, then we will reconvene for their discussion. But we hope that they will revert to status quo ante”, Osifo said. 



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