Daily Trust (Abuja)

24 November 2012

Nigeria: NLC and Subsidy Removal

opinion

Abuja — I may not speak for everyone, but I do believe millions of Nigerians have just about given up on the NLC and government: the latter to have any serious compassion for the common man's plight to seek better ways to help improve our lives; the former to be in any real, tangible way an effective force to engage the latter and get a reasonable result out of any anticipated protests.

Many a strike has been embarked upon in the recent past - they left a bitter taste in the mouth by their conclusion.

Desired and much talked about outcomes are hardly, if ever, attained. We are all witnesses to the various compromises reached between government and labour that have all but put the prices of petroleum products far out of the reach of the masses.

Protests and strikes are only effective and necessary tools if they bring about positive changes - a case in point, the striking platinum miners in South Africa recently.

It does us no good to protest vigorously only to capitulate fully at the end of negotiations (if at all) with government.

We do not look forward to these ineffectual methods of expressing our concerns and displeasure over certain government policies. NLC needs to come up with a more effective way of stopping the planned deregulation of the downstream sector of the oil industry and not resort to strikes and protests that only disrupt and cause chaos in the lives of everyday Nigerians.

Bottom line, the masses are the ones who suffer the consequences of deregulation and labour protests.

Our hopes have been dashed enough. Please sit down, honestly discuss and execute plans to move our great nation forward in its process of evolution. We gain nothing from ineffectual protests and strikes.

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