Menu Close

Fuel Subsidy Removal: Nigerian Government, Labour okay Steering Committee to unveil palliatives action plan

*The Federal Government and the Organised Labour have reached an agreement to set up a Presidential Steering Committee with some technical sub-committees to design and implement post-subsidy palliatives plan for workers and millions of other Nigerian consumers by August 2023

Isola Moses | ConsumerConnect

Following the recent pronouncement by President Bola Ahmed Tinubu on the removal of subsidy the Premium Motor Spirit (PMS), also known as petrol, the Federal Government and Organised Labour have reached an agreement to sort out the implementation of the resolutions they reached on post-subsidy palliatives by August 2023.

ConsumerConnect reports the principal objective of the deal is to cushion the effects of petroleum subsidy removal on especially vulnerable Nigerian consumers.

Prior to this agreement to release the plan to activate the palliatives, the representatives of the government and Nigeria Labour Congress (NLC) and Trade Union Congress (TUC) recently adjourned their meeting till June 19 after jointly ratifying seven-point resolutions and three agreements for the welfare of workers, and other Nigerians.

Meeting attendance

Present at the meeting in the State House Monday were Joe Ajaero, President  of NLC; Festus Osifo, President of TUC; the Chief of Staff (CoS) to the President, Femi Gbajabiamila; Special Adviser for Revenue, Zachaeus Adedeji; and the Special Adviser for Energy, Olu Verheijen, and the Permanent Secretary in the Ministry of Labour and Employment, Kachallom Daju.

Others include the Group Chief Executive Officer (GCEO), Nigerian National Petroleum Company Limited NNPCL, Mele Kyari; Chief Executive Officer of Nigerian Upstream Petroleum Regulatory Commission (NUPRC), Gbenga Komolafe; CEO of Nigeria Midstream and Downstream Petroleum Regulatory Authority (NMDPRA), Farouk Ahmed, among others.

Government, NLC, TUC agree to set up a Presidential Steering Committee

Both the government delegation and representatives of the Organised Labour at their resumed meeting Monday, June 19, in the Presidential Villa, Abuja, FCT, resolved to, among other things, set up a Presidential Steering Committee (PSC) to serve as a clearing house in coordinating the technical sub-committees on different items raised.

While addressing the State House correspondents after the meeting Monday, Comrade Joe Ajaero, President of NLC, and Festus Osifo, TUC President, discloses the two parties would reconvene Monday, June 26, to review the agreed framework on the palliatives plan.

Osifo said: “We have concluded our meeting. If you remember very well, the last time that we were here, that TUC and NLC met with government about two weeks ago, we agreed that we were going to reconvene today (June 19).

“We just reconvened. We had a meeting although brief.”

The President of TUC also stated: “We agreed that anything we are putting together we are going to conclude everything in eight weeks.

“Everything must be rolled out within that time, not something that we are going to leave endlessly. They have submitted the framework to us. We have looked at it.”

He noted: “We have made input. This night, we will continuously work on it in order for us to come up with the deliverables.

“If you look at the communiqué that was signed in our last meeting, there are some action items in the communiqué.”

Osifo further said: “So, it’s actually how these action items will be delivered. For example, we need to have a Presidential Steering Committee that will have to oversee everything.”

Other stakeholders involved in activating action items

According to Osifo, “we also need to have technical sub-committees, because if we talk about the issue of CNG, we need experts.”

He as well explained: “You need those people that are willing to invest.

“You need the national oil company, the Nigerian National Petroleum Company Limited (NNPCL), to come up with what they need to do, and the time with which they are going to deliver.

“There are some technicalities that are required beyond this meeting.

“So, those technical committees will be subsumed under Presidential committees.”

He equally disclosed that “all these we must conclude maximum in eight weeks.

“So, those technical committees, some will submit their reports in one week.

“When they submit in one week, we implement; when they submit in two weeks, we will implement. But the last should not exceed eight weeks.”

Osifo said: “The terms of reference of these committees are going to be agreed on between today and tomorrow (Tuesday).

“We are looking at five broad technical committees that will be subsumed under the Presidential Steering Committee.”

He added: “There must be timelines in these terms of reference but maximum should not exceed eight weeks.

“By next week Monday, we will be here again, same time.”

PSC is a ‘clearing house’ for all other technical sub-committees -Alake, Presidential Spokesman

Speaking after the meeting the Labour representatives Monday, Mr. Dele Alake, Special Adviser (SA) to the President on Special Duties, Communication and Strategies, also said the meeting considered the short term, medium term, and long-term measures in resolving the fuel subsidy removal issue with government.

Alake stated: “We reconvened today (Monday). Both parties went through this list and we tipped off the viable ones. Those things are broken into three categories.

“The immediate: those that can be of low hanging fruits in the short-term; the medium-term and the long-term.”

The Presidential aide also noted: “Those lists of demands in terms of implementation and execution fall into those three broad categories of short, medium and long term categories.

“So, that’s what we decided today and other meetings will still be held in order to dot the i’s and cross the t’s.

“One group has been constituted at today’s meeting. There is a steering committee that will be like a clearing house.”

The Spokesman of the President also said: “There are other groups set up, comprising both parties, government and labour members, and these groups will work together very harmoniously and efficiently to arrive at the final resolution of all these demands and what we call interventions.”

Kindly Share This Story




Kindly share this story