Nigerians will continue to pay more for fuel even as Labour called off its planned strike scheduled for today.
Of the two contentious issues -hike in petrol price and increase in electricity tariff – the planks on which the organised labour was to begin strike, the Federal Government refused to shift ground on petrol price hike during a meeting between Labour leaders and the government on Sunday night, which lasted till the early hours of Monday.
However, the government says it will be doing more to improve local refining capacity, rehabilitation of Nigeria’s refineries and pursue the CNG alternative aggressively by for instance, providing CNG mass transit buses across the country.
For the increase in electricity tariff, the new price regime is to be suspended as a committee has been set up to look into what the government described as conflicting field reports justifying the hike in electricity tariff.
The hike in electricity tariff will be put on hold for two weeks within which the committee will conduct its investigations and submit its report.
The committee is to be headed by Dr Chris Ngige, Minister of Labour and Employment.
On the petrol price hike, Dr Ngige decried the stifled growth in Nigeria’s downstream sector and the dire circumstances faced by government which he claims is the justification for fuel subsidy removal.