By Gift Olivia Samuel, The Sight News
ABUJA—President Muhammadu Buhari, has on Tuesday, revealed, that any candidate proposing the sale of Refineries and privatization of the Nigerian National Petroleum Corporation (NNPC), will not get any vote from the Nigeria Labour Congress(NLC) in the forth coming elections.
Buhari, who made this known in Abuja at the 12th Delegates Conference of the Nigeria Labour Congress, was reacting to the address of the NLC President, Comrade Ayuba Wabba at the conference.
Wabba, had earlier called on the government to reverse the power sector privatisation, which he said has failed, adding that privatization of public utilities has not generally proven to be the correct thing to do in most countries even developed ones.
President Buhari who was represented by the Secretary to the Government of the Federation, Boss Mustapha, commended Wabba and his team, for being resolute in the pursuit of the affairs and issues bothering on the interest of the working class in Nigeria.
According to him, “Nigeria labour movement is totally opposed to the sale of our refineries and also the privatization of the NNPC. The present administration has always regarded the NLC as partners in progress”.
He reassured the workers of the government’s commitment to addressing the issues of welfare, as well as other pending labour issues.
“The Federal government pleads for continuous understanding of the workers as it moves to address the pressing issues of the minimum wage. This present administration is concerned about any job loss and will try to ensure that inspite of the new minimum wage increase, every working Nigerian remains in their places of work, in a conducive environment and earn their wages”, he added.
Earlier in his address, the NLC President, Comrade Ayuba Wabba, stressed that privatization of public utilities must stop, adding that the supposed private entrepreneurs have failed to turn anything around except maybe their pockets, unfortunately, at the expense of Nigerians.
“Since the privatization of electricity distribution, Nigerians are yet to see the fulfilment of promises of efficient service delivery. Instead, the electricity situation has gone worse with chronic failures by DISCOs to supply prepaid meters, exploitation of Nigerians through estimated billings and reluctance to attend to basic complaints. Even with N39 billion bailout funds from government. This must stop!”, he emphasized.
On the forthcoming elections,Wabba called on the election management body – Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) – and all stakeholders, to ensure a peaceful, free, fair and credible elections in February and March, 2019.
According to Wabba, “Nigerians must rise above partisan interests and become the winners of this election – not political parties and their candidates. The truth is that we do not have any other country other than Nigeria to call our own”.
This year’s Delegates Conference with the theme, “Towards a Decade of Activism for the promotion of Labour Unity, National Rebirth and Development”, would be the 12th since the formation of the NLC in 1978.