The Nigeria Labour Congress has opposed to the removal of fuel subsidy in the country.
Its National Working Committee led by Ayuba Wabba read the communique after an emergency meeting of the NWC in Abuja on Tuesday.
The NLC President said that the congress also rejected the new tariff regime for electricity and the reintroduction of toll gates in the country.
Wabba said that government must give the requisite attention to develop the nation’s capacity to refine crude oil which would give Nigerians the opportunity to even pay lower than the current pump price.
According to the president “Two issues have been on the table; one was the outright removal of the subsidy and the other, the move to increase the price of petroleum products and you know the position of the congress on these has not changed.
We are also saying that we should also benefit from the falling prices of crude oil.
We must think out of the box: why must we be importing. If we are not importing, we should be paying lower.
We call on the government to look at the report of the NLC in 2010; it would not be proper to transfer the brunt of the subsidy issue to Nigerians.
It is the decision of the CWC that we must first develop the capacity to refine crude oil in the country before talking about the issue of the subsidy.
We should not continue to import products for domestic use. Nigerians must not be made to bear the brunt of the falling price of crude oil and the difference in the exchange rate.”
On the issue of the increase in the electricity tariff, Wabba said that incessant increase in the tariff was unacceptable to the congress.
“This position of the government is worrisome. The increase is incessant. This is the fourth time they are increasing the tariff. I have seen their template and it is designed to increase the tariff every year.
The regime of estimated bill should be brought to an end. NLC demands that the entire process of privatisation should be reviewed because the objective of the exercise has not been achieved. Government must ensure that prepaid meters are made available to the consumers,” Wabba said.