BY VICTOR AHIUMA-YOUNG
LAGOS – PETROLEUM and Natural Gas Senior Staff Association of Nigeria, PENGASSAN, yesterday said both downstream and upstream operations of the oil sector including export terminals would be shut down from Monday in line with the directives by the Nigeria Labour Congress and Trade Union Congress of Nigeria, TUC, over the increase in the pump price of petrol.
Also, the Association of Senior Staff of Banks, Insurance and Financial Institutions, ASSBIFI, has directed all members to stay off duty from Monday January 9.
ASSBIFI directs senior bank workers to shut banks
Association of Senior Staff of Banks, Insurance and Financial Institutions, ASSBIFI, has directed all members to stay off duty from Monday January 9, in line with the decision of NLC and TUC.
Civil society groups back Monday strike
The Joint Action Front, JAF, the umbrella body for pro-labour civil society groups in the country yesterday threw its weight behind the indefinite nationwide strike At a briefing after its meeting in Lagos, JAF Chairman, Dr. Dipo Fasina said the group had agreed with the two labour centres on the need for labour and all civil society allies to work together under the Labour and Civil Society Coalition, LASCO, in resisting the latest policy.
Fasina, who explained that the fight against increase in petrol price had gone beyond the labour movement, maintained that should labour back out of the strike, the civil society groups and other Nigerians will continue until government rescinds its policy decision, on the issue.
No dialogue with Government
Meanwhile, leaders of NLC yesterday dismissed insinuations that they were discreetly meeting with government in a bid to abort the planned strike.
They also faulted media reports credited to the Presidency that some marketers were sponsoring several protests around the country and the planned strike against the fuel hike.
In a statement by its Acting General Secretary, Comrade Owei Lakemfa, NLC said “This is an absolute falsehood. Labour leaders are busy mobilising for the indefinite strike action and mass protests which commence from Monday 9th January 2012, and have no time for frivolous, unsustainable and unproductive ‘dialogue’ with the Presidency or any of its Dialogue Committees.
We see these stories of “meetings” with the Federal Government as mischievous and part of government’s strategy to break the fuel hike protest. We restate categorically that the Labour Movement has no intention to hold any discussion with the Federal Government or any of its officials on the issue of increases in petrol prices until the price is reverted to N65 per litre.