Tells Workers To Be Battle Ready Against The Anti-People Policy
The Nigeria Labour Congress, NLC, has accused the courts in the country of being responsible for the present sufferings; hardships and underdevelopment the citizenry are passing through.
NLC also urged Nigerians to disregard the alleged state-sponsored rallies aimed at enslaving workers, stressing that the rallies are clear reminders of the Youth Earnestly Ask for Abacha movement days that forced them to reminiscence the days of the bespectacled dictator that ran roughshod over the nation and trampled upon all known democratic and civil rights of the citizens and workers.
President of the NLC, Comrade Joe Ajaero, who stated this in his address at the closing ceremony of the 2023 Rain School of the congress in Uyo, Akwa Ibom State, told workers to be battle-ready and brace for another round of struggle for the emancipation of the people and the workers.
He said that the earlier nationwide action organized by labour over the removal of fuel subsidy was allegedly sabotaged by an abnormal injunction procured and served on NLC in “unholy circumstances” from the Courts by the Government.
“Whether this antics of manipulating the Courts to sabotage our collective resolve will work this time is going to be left in the hands of Nigerians and the seriousness with which they see the imminent peril which our lives are being subjected to. That is why we want Nigerian workers and Nigerian people to blame all our present sufferings, hardships and underdevelopment on the Courts,” he said.
He said, “It is said that after the rain comes shine! Today, it is shining brighter and brighter! At the end of every journey is a time of reckoning and a time to say goodbyes! Time to evaluate what has been done and what has been accomplished! We have all spent a fruitful week learning new skills and getting empowered for the battle ahead; the struggles for a more humane and inclusive globe where workers will no longer be seen as appendages but as critical players towards greater wealth creation and development.
“Comrades! That is why it is indeed with great pleasure and honour that I stand with you on this auspicious occasion that marks the end of this year’s Rain School. The hard work has been done and we believe, the harvests and its various outcomes would soon be demonstrated in new deeper and more robust engagements with the social partners especially as we grapple with the increasing threat of neo-liberalism and its offshoots such as the incipient and burgeoning anti-poor; pro-capital policies of the government of Nigeria.
“It is important that we quickly draw your attention to the insensitive and utterly unacceptable hike in the prices of Petroleum products by the government of Nigeria in the midst of the suffering occasioned by the earlier hike of same product price to N537/litre on the 29th day of May 2023. Nigerians were yet to grapple with the shock of that inauguration day price increase when just few days ago, we were shocked with the announcement of a fresh price hike to N617/litre by the agents of the federal government. To us comrades, this is most unconscionable and a further attempt at emasculating an already suffering and bent Nigerians who are currently groaning under the yoke of an unbending malevolent group presently occupying the corridors of power.
“We have pointed this out so as to prepare all of our minds on the battle that awaits all of us as we leave this place. The skills we have acquired here must be used to strategically respond to this nascent wickedness if we must remain relevant as the people cry out and ask; where is Labour and where is the NLC? A cry is out there in the streets comrades and we must respond creatively and timely to those calls. It is in the nature and robustness of our response that the testimony of what we have acquired these past days will be borne. It is truly going to be a demonstration of our resilience which is anchored on how we are able to meet with the desires and expectations of those who look up to us for the articulation and defense of their rights and privileges.
“It is on this note that we call on all Nigerians to get ready to join hands with us as we begin preparation to build a coalition of all Nigerian people; from the North to the South and from the East to the West. A Coalition of the suffering, oppressed and deprived where everyone will be a leader and everyone will be a follower. Hunger and poverty transcend ethnic and religious boundaries and it is our collective and indeed civic duty to save ourselves and our nation from the clutches of these mindless policies.
“Nigerians must disregard the state sponsored rallies aimed at further enslaving us. These rallies are clear reminders of the Youth Earnestly Ask for Abacha movement days and truly forces us to reminiscence the days of the bespectacled dictator who ran roughshod over our nation and trampled upon all known democratic and civil rights of the citizens and workers.
“As we brace for another round of struggle for the emancipation of our people and ourselves, we call on all of us who have attended this year’s programme to take charge and provide leadership in their various constituencies so that together, we can generate the critical mass needed to compel this government to listen to the wishes of Nigerian people.
“Comrades! Our earlier nationwide action was sabotaged by an abnormal injunction procured and served on us in unholy circumstances from the Courts by the Government.”
Continuing, he said, “As we gird our loins with the lessons from our various discourses here and as we eagerly prepare for our various destinations in and out of Nigeria, we urge you not to remain forever as students. The success of this week can only be measured by what you are able to do with it and how you are able to impact lives and your different unions. Nietsche reminds us that the worst thing we can do to our teachers is to remain students forever!
“We therefore urge you to impart on others the lessons learnt here. Apply them and use it to change whatever platform or society that we come across. Be worthy ambassadors of this school and let the light that has been lit in you here shine brightly wherever you go and in whatever you do”.