By Gabriel Enogholase – Benin
In spite of the suspension of the nationwide strike by the organised labour over the recent hike in electricity tariff, fuel and Value Added Tax (VAT), members of the Nigeria Labour Congress (NLC), and Trade Union Congress in Edo State, took to the main streets of Benin.
The trade unionists who carried different placards such as “No to Electricity Hike”, “No to Fuel Hike”, “Kill Corruption” amongst others, assembled at the Ring Road, lashed the government for increasing the price of fuel and electricity tariff.
Led by the former Presidential candidate of the National Conscience Party (NCP), Dr Osagie Obayuwana and the Edo State NLC chairman, Mr Sunny Osayande, insisted that they will embark on a total strike if the government refuses to reverse the increment in two weeks.
Obayuwana said: “We say no to the increase in electricity tariff, fuel and VAT. We say no to privatization where our wealth is given to a few persons.
“They are just buying time but before you know it, two weeks will come and go.”
Speaking in the same vein, Osayande said that the union decided to embark on the peaceful march to express its displeasure over the manner the union called off the strike.
The chairman warned that in the event that the government refuses to listen to the grievances of organised labour in two weeks time, it will have no choice but to embark on a total strike.
The unionist added: “We took to the streets to tell the masses that what the Federal government brought is nothing. The hike in VAT, fuel and electricity tariff should be reversed within two weeks, if not we will go on strike.”