The Joint Action Front (JAF), the pro-Labour Civil Society component of the Labour and Civil Society Coalition, has berated the federal government over its ‘flagrant disregard of the National Assembly and the wishes of Nigerians.”
The group disclosed this during a media briefing, Thursday, in Lagos.
Widespread protests across the country have continued to greet the federal government’s removal of fuel subsidy.
“The vast majority of the Nigerian people have said no to this pump price increase,” said Dipo Fashina, JAF’s chairman.
“The National Assembly – the House of Representatives said no and the Senate said they are not yet in the position to approve.”
“So who are the people left? It is the tiny few in Aso Rock and their friends. In other words, a few people have decided to punish Nigerians,” said Mr. Fashina.
The removal of fuel subsidy has seen fuel price rising from the initial N65 per litre to between N140 and N200.
“The position of JAF is that the pump price introduced by the president and the Aso Rock and their friends is not acceptable,” said Mr. Fashina, a former president of the Academic Staff Union of Universities.
“But not just that; to JAF any increase above N65 is not acceptable. What is acceptable, and that is the only thing acceptable, is the reversal,” he added.
On Tuesday, the group led other civil society groups and Lagos residents to a protest against the subsidy removal that effectively brought the nation’s commercial capital to a standstill.
“We have demonstrated that the Nigerian people are capable of organizing themselves to resist this cruel imposition as they are capable of resisting any punitive measure taken by any government,” Mr. Fashina said.
“From this point of view, JAF is going to continue the struggle that is has started but with the addendum that it has now become a Labour struggle.
“We are determined to organize all over Nigeria resistance so as to reverse this cruel imposition by a tiny,” he said.
The group maintained that the ‘resistance’ is determined to extricate the nation from the clutches of the International Monetary Fund (IMF) and the World Bank.
“We shall resist, people should not think that the resistance will start only from Lagos. The resistance will start from all over the country,” said Mr. Fashina.
“This country is not owned by a few people. This country is not owned by IMF or the World Bank. This country is not owned by the agents of the IMF or the World Bank.
“This country belongs to the people of Nigeria and if a group ignore the view of the majority of Nigerians and even the parliament…, the Nigerian people ought to fight them to finish,” Mr. Fashina said.