sunnewsonline.com – From Desmond Mgbo, Kano, Noah Ebije, Kaduna, George Onyejiuwa, Owerri and Emmanuel Uzor, Abakaliki
No fewer than five State chapters of the Nigeria Labour Congress (NLC) have declared readiness for a planned mass protest by organised labour over the recent increase in pump price of petrol by the Federal Government.
Kaduna, Kano, Ebonyi and Enugu State chapters of the labour union as well as the Kaduna State Trade Union Congress (NUC) are ready for the strike.
Addressing newsmen yesterday, Chairman of Kaduna NLC chapter, Comrade Adamu Ango said he expects Governor Nasir el-Rufai, Senator Shehu Sani and Comptroller General of Nigerian Customs, Hameed Ali (retd) to actively participate in the strike because they kicked against fuel increase in 2012.
He said: “The strike is going to be total and indefinite. We are going to hold protest marches and procession,. We believe they joined us in 2012 to protest out of patriotism and genuine anger over a bad policy, not as a means of riding to power. Today, we are faced with the same situation, so we expect them to join us”.
In Ebonyi, the NLC and TUC chapters in the state, yesterday, directed workers to proceed on indefinite strike as from tomorrow, should the federal government ignore calls to revert the new pump price.
In a joint press briefing by the leadership of NLC and TUC in the state, led by Comrades Ikechukwu Nwafor and Nwonu Michael, respectively, they noted that the strike would be total.
Meanwhile, hundreds of students under aegis of the National Association of Nigeria Students (NANS) Imo State chapter, yesterday took to the streets in Owerri to pledge their support for the proposed strike by the Nigerian Labour Congress (NLC) against the recent hike in the price of petrol.
The protesting students, who displayed placards with different inscriptions caused heavy traffic gridlock as they marched along, singing solidarity songs.
However, there are indications that the planned protest by NLC and TUC would be undermined in most of the Northern parts of the country.
Daily Sun gathered that the leadership of the Harmonised Traders Union yesterday directed its members to disregard any call to close shops by NLC, advising them not to take any step except as directed by their mother union, Harmonised Traders Union of Nigeria.
National President of the association, Dr Bature Abdulaziz, during a media session said they stood by the federal government on the recent removal of subsidy in fuel price.
Addressing newsmen yesterday, in Kano, a former chairman of TUC in Kaduna State, Comrade Paul Jezhi warned NLC and their allied bodies to discontinue their action, describing the planned protest as a failed mission.
He said that the removal of fuel subsidy was inevitable, but insisted that in the long run, it would usher in a window of blessings to all Nigerians.