We are not part of NLC protest -TUC

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By Michael Oche

Trade Union Congress of Nigeria (TUC), has said it was never part of the process, meeting and declaration of embarking on streets protest against the economic hardship slated by the Nigeria Labour Congress (NLC).

TUC explained that the NLC protest for economic hardship was not related to the initial 14days ultimatum given to the Federal government because of the non-implementation of the agreement on wage award, salary increase, CNG buses and others reached with the government in October 2023.

TUC President, Festus Osifo, said this when he addressed journalists in Abuja on some recommendations on what the government should do to end the worsening economic hardship and revive the country’s economy.

He said, “It is where you agree that you want to do something jointly and along the line, you decide that you are not doing again, that is when you will be talking of opting out. There was no initial agreement to embark on the protest. Whenever we are doing things together, you always see us coming together and addressing you.

“On that particular day the ultimatum for the protest was issued, did you see any member of TUC there? I know a lot of you you’ve read the letter that was leaked. The letter was actually meant for NLC members, but it found its way to the press.

“And I think it was very clearly stated in the letter. I think the reasons have clearly stated so we were not part of the process. We were not part of the agreement,abinitio. So there is no need to opt out from it at all.

“Like I’ve said repeatedly, in the trade union movement, you have a tool box, and in that toolbox, you have different tools that you could use in calling the government to order. First of all you engage with what you think is superior information, and that is what we have put together today. We will engage the government with the solution points we listed here today. We will push the government, discuss with them, have conversations with them, have meetings with them, proffer the solutions that we have put forward.”

The Trade Union Congress further lists its solution demands from government to include: “ Determination of Real Value of Naira, New Minimum Wage, Custom Exchange Rate for Goods used in Manufacturing, Allegation that sub Nationals throw billions of Dollars Monthly into the Parallel Market, Dollarization of Political Party Primaries and Electioneering, Clamp down on speculative trading in the foreign exchange market, Patronizing Made in Nigeria Goods, Strengthening the Economic Management Team, Time to stop following the dictate of IMF and World Bank, Effectively supervising the activities of Banks, Curbing Crude Oil Theft and Increasing Investment in enhancing Oil and Gas Production, Curbing Insecurity for Farmers to Return to Farm, Temporary Importation of Food from Abroad, Local Refinery of Crude Oil.”