The Nigeria Labour Congress (NLC) and its affiliate groups have restrategised on how to make sure the second day of their industrial action is a huge success.
The labour unions in the country had commenced an indefinite strike on Wednesday, May 18, to ask for the reversal of fuel pump price of Premium Motor Spirit (PMS) otherwise known as petrol from the N145 which the removal of fuel subsidy pegged it.
This was in spite of a court injunction restraining them from carrying out same action, especially after the federal government, in a meeting with the union leaders on Tuesday night, had agreed to have a committee to review the fuel pump price and the minimum wage issue.
There was an impediment on their movement in Lagos as police officers tried to stop them from moving towards Airport Road in Ikeja area of the state, but the unionists told the security operatives that they were supposed to support and not stop them in the struggle
One of the placards on display on the first day of the industrial action.
And even when a vast majority of Nigerians decided to ignore the industrial action and stay at home, the protesters insisted that their demonstration on the first day for sensitisation of Nigerians.
To compound matters, only a handful of states complied with the directives of NLC’s national body as there have been reports of discord within the caucus of the union but the union insisted Wednesday, that their members would storm the streets on Thursday until their requests have been granted by the federal government.
“There will be no work tomorrow (Thursday) because we are all in this together and it is because of the people that we are on the streets.
“Believe me, we shall be more than this number tomorrow because other members will join us. We are not alone in this struggle, it is about the suffering masses, the oppressed, the downtrodden,” one of the union leaders told aauxclusive.com during the first day of the protest.
In the statement signed by Peter Ozo-Eson, NLC’s secretary general, the union added: “No level of comfort today or primordial sentiments should blind us to the cruel realities of the increase in the pump price of the petroleum products as what we are seeing is just the beginning.”
The unionists have since asked their members and other Nigerians to converge at Berger roundabout in Lagos on Thursday morning, but there were no details from the meeting point as at the time of putting this article up.
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16:08′ Following the reluctance of workers to join the struggle against the federal government over the fuel price hike, president of the Nigeria Labour Congress (NLC), Aliyu Waaba, has said that the union will review their actions and think of the next step to follow in their agitation.
Speaking on a live programme monitored in Lagos, Waaba said the NLC leadership will organise another meeting to review and evaluate the influence of the industrial action and see if the administration will change its decision to raise the pump price of petrol to N145.00 per litre.
15:13′ Some of the protesters also stormed Lagos state secretariat, and molested some of their members for not joining the struggle
14:44′ As the protest continues in Ibadan, residents have been advised to take alternative routes as the agitators have blocked the major roads in the city.
14:39′ In Ebonyi state, police officers have reportedly beaten up labour union leaders during their rally in the state.
Reports say the workers were intercepted near Pastoral Centre along the Abakaliki-Enugu Expres