NLC criticises NGF’s recommendations to FG over state of economy

NLC criticises NGF’s recommendations to FG over state of economy

The Nigerian Labour Congress (NLC) has criticised the Nigerian Governors Forum’s recommendations to the Federal Government on how to save the country from economic collapse.

The NLC President, Mr Ayuba Wabba said this in a letter addressed to President Muhammadu Buhari and made available to newsmen on Friday, August 12, in Abuja.

It was alleged that the governors had proposed the elimination of PMS subsidy/under-recovery estimated at N6-7 trillion.

They had also proposed the early retirement of civil servants from age 50 and above and the implementation of the reviewed Oronsaye Report which suggests ending the financing of the government’s budgetary expenditures.

The governors also proposed putting a final stop to fuel subsidy, eliminating NNPC’s federation-funded projects, capping Social Investment Programme (SIP) and National Poverty Reduction with Growth Strategy budgets at N200 billion among others.

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Wabba had described the governors’ recommendations to the Federal Government as insensitive, selfish, and hypocritical.

“Your Excellency, while we do agree that the economy is in need of revitalisation, we are dismayed by some of the prescriptions of the governors as they smack of extreme selfishness and insensate cruelty.”

According to him, the governors have canvassed for the premature termination of the appointments of public servants from age 50 and above in clear violation of their contracts of employment which is a subsisting law.

“We find this repugnant, shameful, and utterly irresponsible. Aside from running contrary to your mission and principle of creating 100 million jobs.

”Aside from poverty intervention schemes, this policy is a clear invitation to anarchy and damnation.

“Pursuant to this, if State Governors strongly believe that age 50 is the problem, we demand that all governors, public office holders, and politicians above 50, as a mark of good faith, should immediately step aside.

”Leading by example would spur public servants to take a cue.

“Beyond this, however, implementation of this policy in the public sector will give a cue to the private sector to follow suit, with all its attendant devastating consequences,’’ the NLC Head said.

Wabba also said that Nigerian governors were famous for ”lavish spending and wastage” and there was no assurance that money saved from stopped oil subsidy would be channeled to good use.

He also said on the issue of removal of fuel subsidy that congress found it “unrealistic, insensitive and hypocritical.”

”We find it distasteful that petrol subsidies in Nigeria create distortions in the economy but they do the opposite in the US or Western Europe.

“Truth is that removal of the little benefit the average person in Nigeria enjoys could lead to unintended consequences which we would be better off without.’’

The NLC Chairmaan, therefore, said that the solution to subsidy and the increasing deficits laid in domestic refining, and effective management of Nigerian refineries.



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