Oyebanji assures of cushioning effects of subsidy removal

* As labour seeks immediate reversal of anti-poor policies of govt

Ekiti State Governor, Mr Biodun Oyebanji, has assured the organised labour in the state and as well residents of better welfare packages that will cushion the effects of the fuel subsidy removal on workers and the general public.

Oyebanji said his government had already set up a committee to meet with the organised labour to finalize proposal for palliatives aimed at cushioning the effect of the subsidy removal on the citizens.

The governor said that he and President Bola Tinubu were not unmindful of the effects of subsidy removal on the incomes of salary earners and other citizens.

He was represented by the Head of Service, Barrister Bamidele Agbede, when the organized labour in the state took their peaceful protest over fuel subsidy removal and accompanying pains to the Governor’s Office to submit a letter containing their demands for onward transmission to the president.

Oyebanji said that a cluster of palliative measures is being planned just as salary increase is being discussed with relevant stakeholders.

He appreciated the labour unions in the state for the peaceful protest as he appealed for calm that things would get better very soon.

In their separate addresses, the Chairman of Nigeria Labour Congress, Ekiti State Chapter, Com. Kolapo Olatunde and the Chairman of Trade Union Congress, Com. Sola Adigun, decried the hardship occasioned by the removal of fuel subsidy, noting that the step had paralyzed almost all sectors of the nation’s economy.

The labour leaders urged federal and state governments to take prompt actions in alleviating the hardship faced by Nigerians, saying the palliative rolled out by the President in his nationwide broadcast on Monday night fell short of the expectations of the Nigerian masses and very insignificant to cushion the effect of the suffering in the country.

In the letter signed by NLC President, Joe Ajaero and General Secretary, Emmanuel Ugboaja, the organized labour, is among others, seeking immediate reversal of all anti-poor policies of government.

These, the workers said, included “the recent hike in PMS price, school fees and VAT; fix our local refineries in Port Harcourt, Warri and Kaduna; and release of eight months withheld salaries of university lecturers and workers”.

Others, they said included according “appropriate recognition and support to the presidential steering committee and the work of its sub committees to put a stop to inhuman actions and policies of government.

“Do remain assured of the warmest regards of the leadership of the Congress while you take steps to allow Nigerians be the centre of the policies and programmes of government,” Labour said.

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