NLC Will Continue To Negotiate With Government – Ayuba Wabba

NLC, Ayuba WabbaThe Chairman of the Nigerian Labour Congress (NLC), Mr Ayuba Wabba, says the NLC will continue to negotiate with the Federal Government over its opposition to the hike in the pump price of petrol.

Speaking on Channels Television’s Sunrise Daily on Monday, Mr Wabba noted that the tradition of the NLC is to continue to dialogue on issues that it is passionate about, especially the increase in electricity tariff and pump price of petrol.

The labour union, had on Sunday evening suspended an industrial action it called on Wednesday, May 18 to resist the new price of petrol.

This was after an emergency meeting of its organs – the National Working Committee and the National Executive Committee, where talks were focused on the strike and the way forward.

There were reports that the suspension of the strike was one of the conditions the Federal Government had given for it to resume negotiations with the NLC but Mr Wabba reiterated that the strike was suspended due to the intervention of well-meaning Nigerians including the national leader of the All Progressives Congress (APC), Senator Bola Tinubu and the National Assembly.

He did not give an assurance that all matters would be resolved, but promised that the union would indeed resume negotiations with the government, adding that they would remain consistent in their demands.

“We will go there with open mind to discuss those issues. In the discussion process, we will try to advance a lot of reasons why we think that it should not be only this issue of importation; we can also look at other policy options which we are going to come to the table with,” he said.

Mr Wabba also explained the rationale behind the decision of the labour union to embark on the strike and which they would continue to press for.

“Our standpoint is clear and unambiguous, we believe that it is not sustainable and it will be at a very high cost to continue to over-rely on importation of this product that God has blessed Nigeria with.

“As far back as 2011, we had a documented written agreement with government where they requested for a full-year monitoring period within which to ensure that the issue of importing products will be addressed.

“But here we are, many years down the line we are still at the same point. So, we thought that as NLC we must continue to be consistent and that is the process that actually drove the process of engagement of the NEC and the decision that was taken.”

Mr Wabba stated that as the union resumes negotiations with the government, they would be demanding for a timeline for which the new price hike would be in place as they believe the policy is not sustainable because it is dependent on factors like the foreign exchange rate which is beyond Nigeria’s control.

“We must also agree, like we did in 2011 – documented. When do we think we can be able to move into the next phase of fixing our refineries and also addressing the issue of bunkering and sabotage going on?

“We have realised that what is going on in the oil and gas sector, where most of our facilities are vandalized is because of the fact that it is cheaper and easier and you make quick money when you import and dispose of it.

“Therefore, it is like an incentive to those people that it is cheaper and easier to import product instead of working towards (rebuilding) the refineries,” he said.

Labour Union Ends Strike Called To Resist New Petrol Price

NLC, Strike, PetrolThe Ayuba Wabba faction of the Nigeria Labour Congress has suspended an industrial action called to resist the new price of petrol.

The leader of the union announced the suspension on Sunday.

It came after an emergency meeting of its organs – the National Working Committee and the National Executive Committee.

At the meeting, talks were focused on the strike and the way forward.

Mr Wabba said the strike was suspended due to the intervention of well-meaning Nigerians including the national leader of the All Progressives Congress, Senator Bola Tinubu.


In a statement issued after the meeting, Comrade Wabba said the industrial action was informed by the twin issues of the unjustified and illegal hike in electricity tariff and increase in the pump price of petrol.

The Congress also announced plans to resume negotiations with the Federal Government, with a view to resolving the issues that prompted the strike.

The NLC President added that the Congress would continue to resist wrong legislations, policies and programmes that would impact negatively on the lives of ordinary Nigerians.

Pump price of petrol was increase from 86.50 Naira to 145 Naira by the Federal Government on May 11.

The 67.6 per cent increase had angered the labour union, with the union saying it was insensitive.

 

Energy Economists To Set Agenda On Pricing Of Petrol, Subsidy

petrolExperts in energy economics are advocating the adoption of petroleum products export parity pricing mechanism or the use of prevailing market situation in the determination of the pump price of petrol in Nigeria.

This is one of the issues that will form the agenda at the up-coming International Conference of Energy Economists in Abuja.

It will focus on the role of natural gas and renewable energy resources on energising emerging economies.

President of the Nigeria Association for Energy Economics, Mr Wumi Iledare, said Nigeria must use the low oil prices regime to eliminate subsidy on petrol and deregulate downstream sector.

He also advocated the autonomy of agencies and parastatals in the petroleum sector.