May Day: NLC, TUC Blow Hot, Says Life Miserable Under Tinubu Govt

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The leadership of the Nigerian Labour Congress (NLC), and the Trade Union Congress (TUC) on Wednesday said life has been miserable for Nigerians and workers under President Bola Ahmed Tinubu’s administration.

This was contained in a separate statement issued by the Head of Information and Public Affairs of NLC, Benson Upah and TUC President, Festus Osifo as Nigerian workers celebrate May Day across the country.

The Labour Unions bemoaned the economic hardship workers and other Nigerians are grappling with due to high inflation, foreign exchange crisis, food inflation and energy crisis.

Upah said life has worsened considerably under Tinubu’s government.

He said fuel subsidy removal, the Naira continued crisis at the foreign exchange market, and electricity tariff hike are policies by the Tinubu government fueling the economic hardship on Nigerians and workers.

The spokesperson for the NLC urged President Tinubu to rethink some of his policies for a better life for Nigerian Workers.

“Life has worsened considerably. In fact, the most painful aspect of it is that there is no silver lining in the sky yet. When workers were trying to get used to this ugly situation, the government slammed them with a new energy tariff of 250 per cent, and on the other side, for the workers, nothing has changed.

“So, life has been very terrible for workers in the past year. We wish it could be better.

“To go to specifics: the ill-advised removal of fuel subsidy, the floating of the Naira, and the hike in the tariff of electricity; these three major policies have considerably reduced the value of the Naira.

“Inflation at the moment is 33.2 per cent, and food inflation is a minimum of 40 per cent. The devaluation of the Naira. After these policy announcements. The value of the Naira decreased by about 200 per cent, and after a while, Nigerians started hoping that the Naira would regain its strength and stability. There were other storms.

“Ou we suspect that these policies are dictated from outside this country, and they are not good for the health of this country or for the people of this country, and we advise Mr President to retrace his steps.

“Our message is that workers should not be broken; they should remain strong and be guided by the philosophy of the bedbug that this hot water that they are pouring on us will one day grow cold,” the NLC said.

Meanwhile, the President of the TUC, Osifo, has called on the federal and state governments to prioritise workers’ welfare.

Osifo, who spoke at the Pre-May Day Lecture held in Abuja on Wednesday, said there is a need to put the welfare and interest of the people first in driving any government policy.

Represented at the event by the Deputy President of TUC, Comrade Eitm Okon, Osifo said the theme of the 2024 May Day celebration, which is titled: “Workers First”, is very significant because there is a need to put the people first and to put the workers first in every government policy.

“Today marks another turning point in the history of the trade union movement in this country.

“When we look at the theme of the 2024 Worker’sayWorker’s celebration, which is People First, that is very significant because we need to put the people first, we need to put the workers first, and when you put the people first, you put your family first. This is what is called the first-line charge.

“Today, we have experienced various policy mismatches and summersaults where people’s welfare is put at the bottom of the radar.

“A case in point was the increase in electricity tariff without following due process and without consultation with various stakeholders who would have been involved in taking critical decisions that affect the lives of workers,” he lamented.

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