LABOUR SHUTS DOWN BENUE

Posted: January 11, 2012 in Uncategorized
Tags: , , ,

Nigeria Labour Congress (NLC), the Trade Union Congress (TUC) and
other similar organizations have successfully stage peaceful protests in
Makurdi the Benue state capital and other major urban areas in the
state tune with the directives of their various national bodies. The
protest which yesterday lasted 8 hours had all commercial activities in the
state shut down.

This is even as the nation wide total tool down organized by the same
unions in protest to the subsidy removal palaver was observed to have
recorded 100% compliance.

atiterkula correspondent who monitored the exercise in Makurdi
reports that all markets including roadside shops were closed down.
Food vendors and restaurants were also under lock and key while
vehicular movement restriction was strictly adhered to by motorists.

The protest march which started as early as 7am and lasted for about 8
hours commenced from the NLC secretariat at Wadata, moved to Wurukum
Roundabout over to North Bank and from North Bank through the old
bridge to Wadata and finally to the NLC Secretariat.

A detachment of joint armed police and military officers were seen
guiding the protestersas they march in thousands amidst protest and
solidarity songs.
Addressing the protesters at the Congress’ secretariat, the Chairman
Joint Public Nagotiation Council 1, 2 & 3, Comrade Terkaa Gusa said
that the congress is happy to know that the protest was successful
pointing out that the mammoth crowd that followed them was a clear
indication that Nigerians are all aggrieved with the unpopular
decision of the President Goodluck Jonathan’s administration.

On his part, the state Chairman of the NLC, Comrade Simon Anchaver
said “this is just the beginning, a message to the President of the
country that we are not joking”. He said that labour will not rest
until the Jonathan administration come to the realization that in
democratic rule, the voice and wish of the people is supreme.
The Chairman also informed the gathered mammoth crowd that the protest
which will continue today will end in the Egyptian sleep out style
where demonstrators will be enjoined to sleep out in the cold of the
streets till the susbsidy decision is reversed.

“… everybody should come tomorrow with spare clothes and tootpaste we
will sleep at kullof park tomorrow until Goodluck goes back to
N65.00…We will continue tomorrow and if there is no voice from them
then next tomorrow and we will keep it up till they reverse it to N65.
Not even when it is reverse to N70. What we need is the old rate and
nothing mores”, he vowed.
Meanwhile today January 11, 2012, the stalemate seemed refueled as
protesters thronged the streets of Makurdi in their numbers in re
invigorated solidarity against the removal of fuel subsidy.

The protest which started at about 7: 30 am at the NLC secretariat in
Wadata, moved round the street in a peaceful procession with the aim
to close down all existing commercial and economic service centres
contravening the stalemate order, ended up at the Kullof Park in
wurukum where labour leaders addressed the protesters in line with the
determined line of action for the next day.

Speaking with atiterkula, NLC state chairman, Comrade Simon
Anchaver, stated that the rallies will be continual as the workers and
people of Benue of Benue were disgruntled with the leadership of
President Goodluck Jonathan. Anchaver also added that union was
determined to lock down all access routes to the Benue State capital
to press home their demands.

“…tomorrow we will continue this march until Goodluck Jonathan reverts
to N65:00. We voted him not to torment us but better our future.
Tomorrow we will stage a major protest to forestall traffic in and out
of the town until our demands are met”.He remarked.

Meanwhile the strike which initially seemed to have adopted a lukewarm
attitude owing to the coverted sales of petroleum products especially
the controversial PMS and skeletal transport services had all services
rundown with the commencement of the protest.

Also speaking to our correspondent the State chapter president of
Nigerian National Association of Nurses and Midwives, Mrs. Abaa, noted
that they had mobilized their collegues to make sure the masses for
which the leadership is meant serves her purpose.
Even though we have our own internal demands the general good is
uppermost and we will be part of this protest till our demands are
met.” She acknowledged.
atiterkula findings also show that with the advent of the
current demonstrations price of PMS in the black market which is also
a rare product has risen to an all time peak of N250.00 per litre in
Makurdi, when eventually found.

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