The Federal Government on Monday, has urged the Nigerian Labour Congress (NLC) to embrace dialogue fully as the preferred approach for resolving the issues surrounding the removal of the subsidy on Premium Motor Spirit, commonly known as petrol. The call for dialogue was made by the Minister of Labour, Simon Lalong, during his opening statement at the meeting between government representatives and the NLC.
Lalong, accompanied by the Minister of State for Labour, Nkeiru Onyejeocha, and other ministry officials, expressed appreciation to the Labour Centre for accepting the ministry’s invitation. He emphasized his willingness to collaborate with unionists to find lasting solutions that would benefit all Nigerians.
Lalong stated, “In recent months, our nation has faced significant challenges, including industrial actions and unrest that have negatively impacted the economy. I stand before you today not only as a government representative but also as an advocate for constructive dialogue, aiming to understand your concerns and working together to find lasting solutions that benefit all Nigerians.”
He acknowledged and appreciated the NLC’s vital role in advocating for workers’ rights and welfare. He also recognized the valid grievances that had led to recent labour crises and assured that they would be addressed fairly and equitably. Lalong emphasized the need to strike a balance between addressing workforce concerns and promoting economic growth, urging everyone to engage in open-minded and constructive dialogue to bridge any gaps between worker interests and the goal of economic advancement.
Lalong expressed confidence that the gathering would result in resolutions that strengthen the labour sector and contribute to a brighter future for the country. He anticipated fruitful discussions, emphasizing the importance of harmonious collaboration between the government and the NLC to create an environment where the workforce thrives and the economy prospers.
The meeting between government officials and the NLC was convened in response to threats of an indefinite strike by the NLC, which had previously organized a two-day nationwide protest to highlight their grievances against what they termed “anti-poor” policies under the leadership of President Bola Tinubu.
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