Nigeria Labour Congress (NLC), yesterday, warned those pushing for fuel subsidy removal to forgo the idea and save the country from another round of social unrest.
The labour centre gave the warning following announcement by the President Muhammadu Buhari administration that it had left the matter for the incoming regime.
NLC General Secretary, Emmanuel Ugboaja, during an interview with journalists in Lagos, said nobody should drag the masses and Nigerian workers into any increase in fuel price in the name of subsidy removal, stating that organised labour would kick against it.
According to him, it will be uncharitable in 2023 for any government to be talking about subsidy or no subsidy for a product that is naturally and thoroughly well endowed in Nigeria.
He said it smacks of wickedness for the nation to be discussing subsidy, instead of production.
Ugboaja lamented that the energy and resources that people are putting into discussing subsidy showed a lack of focus.
He said the development shows a lack of seriousness and appreciation of what governance should be.
His words: “If in 2023, rather than getting people that will make proper use of our natural endowment, we are busy discussing the cosmetic challenge of subsidy or no subsidy, then it is absurd.
“One would have thought that the people should be setting before the incoming government a genuine challenge on how to move Nigeria forward. Not for us to continue in the rigmarole of vicious, musical cheers and absurd comedy of subsidy or no subsidy. We cannot be people that do not respond to records.
“What we should be discussing is how to refine crude oil in Nigeria and make the product available for domestic consumption. Anything outside that shows the wickedness of the kind of intellectuals we have. We feel sick each time we see normal people come out on national television, giving theories on subsidy and how they can be ploughed into healthcare or education.
“Nothing is more dangerous than the way our elite try to hoodwink Nigerians. The honest truth is Nigerians need to wake up, we cannot continue in this vicious cycle of humiliation and slavery.
“There is no subsidy for anybody to be removed. The point that has to be made is that we must refine it. Anything outside making our refineries work is wickedness.”