Fuel Subsidy: FG, Labour Continue Talks on Palliatives
THE federal government says it will continue to work out measures to ameliorate the effect of the fuel subsidy removal on Nigerians.
These measures include the introduction of the use of Compressed Natural Gas (CNG), mass transportation and cleaner energy alternatives.
Ms Olu Verheijen, President Bola Tinubu’s Special Adviser on Energy, disclosed this at the end of a meeting with the Nigeria Labour Congress (NLC) and the Trade Union Congress (TUC) in Abuja on Wednesday.
“She said that the meeting made progress in agreeing to fast track a lot of the intervention that would stop the strike planned by the labour unions next week.
“But we are making progress, we’re trying to address the issues that will prevent a strike. We have to get it right. It’s important that we do this well, and we keep our promises.
“So, it’s important that whatever is announced actually gets done. We don’t want to make big announcements and continue to lose people’s trust.
“It’s important that we build trust, and that most of the announcements and the plans that we roll out are credible and impactful,’’ said Verheijen.
She assured that Tinubu was taking measures to address issues concerning the palliatives, adding that he is very concerned about it.
“He is concerned about it, as you’ve seen all of us working round the clock here to make sure that we are able to announce these measures as quickly as possible. It’s a whole package of issues that we’re rolling out as quickly as possible.”
Comrade Joe Ajaero, NLC President, said that the meeting has the mandate to discuss only the pump price of N520 per litre and not that of the N617, adding that they are two separate issues.
“We met based on the N520 increase and the committee that was set based on that and we agreed to work to realise the objectives that were set during that moment.
“The two centres have made their positions known and are before Nigerians; the TUC, the NLC, our position is known. And it’s public knowledge.
“Nobody is discussing N617 as of now and this meeting didn’t have the competence to address that,” he said.
On his part, Comrade Festus Osifo, the TUC President, said that the meeting was able to present a position from both the government and labour, adding that a decision will be taken by Friday on the strike.
“Some of the things they presented we did not agree with. So, the areas we did not agree with we also made our input known. When you come to such a meeting it is for the government or its representatives to do a presentation.
“But it’s left for us to either agree or disagree. So, during the meeting, we gave them sufficient feedback. And they also agreed to go and look at those feedbacks and get back to us on Friday,” he said. (NAN)