The talks between the Federal Authorities and the Organised Labour over the elimination of petrol subsidy and the rise in electrical energy tariffs, resulted in a impasse on Monday.
Whereas welcoming the labour leaders to the assembly held on the Bouquet Corridor of the Presidential Villa, in Abuja, the Minister of Labour and Employment, Senator Chris Ngige, urged stakeholders to hitch heads and deliberate how Nigeria can survive the financial challenges imposed by the COVID-19 pandemic.
Ngige mentioned the assembly is “a bilateral dialogue between us as Nigerians to think about the state of the economic system and occasions which have necessitated current will increase in electrical energy tariff and the worth of petrol.”
The Minister of State for Petroleum Assets, Timipre Sylva, urged the labour to point out extra understanding with the federal government over its insurance policies.
In response to Sylva, Nigeria misplaced about N1billion day by day between 2016 and 2019, on account of gas subsidy and N3.74billion day by day earlier than 2016.
“There are loads of points to debate; from 10 o’clock we haven’t been capable of trash out all of the issues; I feel it is going to be proper to set committees to additional deliberate and resolve them,” he mentioned.
However the President of the Nigeria Labour Congress (NLC), Ayuba Wabba, argued that the current hike in value of gas and electrical energy tariffs additional aggravated the financial hardship dealing with Nigerians.
Wabba mentioned staff who’ve misplaced their jobs and sources of revenue because of COVID-19, are being pressured to make additional sacrifices.
“These points that represent the worth are a part of the inefficiency within the system which the federal government hitherto has been paying and christened subsidy. The federal government can not switch the inefficiency to the folks. Nigeria ought to refine its merchandise,” he mentioned.
“At this level, what do you could have on the desk to cushion the results on staff – their households as a result of they’ve been pushed to the wall and already on the edge. Do you could have something for us? In order that we are able to now say that regardless of these challenges, that is what I’ve for Nigerian staff that they’ll have one thing that may cushion this impact for them.”
In response to him, “Already the worth of minimal wage had been eroded. The buying energy parity, whenever you evaluate with all West African nations, we’re already on the bottom.
“That’s the actuality. In Ghana, evaluate their minimal wage with our personal; in all West Africa nations, together with Niger Republic that has simply began refining not too long ago, they’re now serving us with merchandise. That’s not how we must be.”
The assembly ended with no settlement reached, whereas no date was fastened to proceed the talks.