NLC Blames Govt Officials For Forex Crisis, Demands Urgent Stabilisation Of Naira
NLC President, Joe Ajero

Our Protest Will Be Peaceful, NLC Replies DSS

2 months ago
1 min read

The Nigeria Labour Congress (NLC) has said its planned two days nationwide protest against economic hardship in the country will be peaceful, adding that nothing will stop it from taking place as scheduled.

NLC President, Joe Ajero, made this known in a statement he signed which was released on Wednesday in reaction to concerns expressed by the Department of State Service (DSS), on the proposed protests.

The NLC had on Friday after its National Executive Council meeting, declared a two-day protest to take place on February 27 and 28 after the expiration of its 14-day ultimatum earlier issued to the federal government to fulfil the pledge made in addressing the welfare of workers across the country amidst the current economic hardship caused by petrol subsidy removal and foreign exchange reforms.

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DSS had in a statement signed by its spokesperson, Dr Peter Afunanya, on Wednesday called on NLC to shelve the protest, “in the interest of peace and public order.”

The agency said it is aware that some elements are planning to use the opportunity of the protest “to foment crisis and by extension, widespread violence,” adding that the outcome would would “worsen the socio-economic situation across the country.”

DSS urged all labour unions to continue engaging in dialogue and negotiation and give the federal government the chance to handle the challenges at hand, “rather than engaging in conducts that could heighten tensions.”

Reacting to that the NLC President said: “We are concerned by the unsolicited advice of the Department of State Security to shelve our planned protest against the unprecedented high cost of living in spite of the indescribable suffering in the land, spiralling inflation, deepening poverty and the Naira at an exchange rate of N1,900 to the US Dollar.”

He said labour is equally worried that although DSS is aware of plans by some criminal elements to seize the opportunity of the protest to orchestrate violence yet failed to arrest them.

He said NLC will not yield to any form of blackmail, adding that the protest will not lead to breakdown of law and order or compromise national security.

“We want to reassure them that no one loves this country more than us and on our honour, we would never do anything that will compromise its sovereignty or security.

“We would not have ourselves blackmailed or lied against by the Service. Our protest is a peaceful one against the unpardonable cost of living of which the unserviced personnel of the Service are also victims. We cannot fold our hands and pretend all is well. That will be a grievous conspiracy that history will not forgive,” the NLC President stated.

 

 

Victor Ezeja is a passionate journalist with six years of experience writing on economy, politics and energy. He holds a Masters degree in Mass Communication.

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