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Politics

NLC protest: Pro-Tinubu group rallies in Abuja

Just as the Nigeria Labour Congress (NLC) commenced nationwide protests on Tuesday, some groups loyal to President Bola Ahmed Tinubu, in thousands, stormed the National Assembly complex in support of the reforms so far put in place by the present administration.

The protesters who converged at the Abuja Unity Fountain staged a peaceful walk to the National Assembly complex, calling on the Nigeria Labour Congress (NLC) to call off their action.

The protesters, who brandished various placards in support of the President Bola Ahmed Tinubu-led administration, called on organised labour to halt any action that may jeopardise the economy in the interest of the nation.

Among the inscriptions on the banners and placards brandished by the anti-NLC protesters were: “President Tinubu is rebuilding Nigeria for sustainable economic development,” “Nigerians should be patient with the president,” and “President Tinubu is restructuring Nigeria for the better,” among others.

Led by Kabiru Mohammed Matazu, the protesters insist that the decision by President Tinubu’s administration has demonstrated a dedicated commitment to addressing the hardship faced by Nigerians with the urgency they deserve.

They urged the NLC to engage in a constructive dialogue with the government instead of grounding economic activities, exacerbating the issues, and further making life hard for the common man.

Matazu noted: “The government of President Tinubu inherited multifaceted problems confronting the nation. These problems are enormous, and when he came on board, he introduced reforms that would liberate Nigeria from economic segregation.

“That was why he removed the fuel subsidy the first day he assumed duty. If at all Mr. President wanted to live the lie, this country would have been no more today. But he had the courage to remove the cancer of the fuel subsidy that is benefiting a few privileged Nigerians.

“As we know, over N400 billion was used to subsidise fuel monthly. He also made sure the gap between the naira and the dollar was bridged. It takes courage to make these far-reaching decisions that will turn the fortunes of the nation around. The impact of fuel subsidy removal and the floating of the naira would be felt. But it would be felt in the long term.

“Not now. So we are calling on the NLC to give the government a chance. They should not allow themselves to be used by opposition elements. That is why we are here to express our solidarity with the President Tinubu-led administration.”.

“At this critical juncture, the transparency exhibited by President Tinubu’s administration in addressing inherited challenges should not be overlooked. We call on the NLC to prioritise the interests of the people, abandoning the protest in favour of dialogue. It is only through collaborative efforts that we can effectively address the multifaceted problems facing our nation.

“Let us, as responsible citizens, encourage dialogue, understanding, and unity to navigate our nation out of these challenges. Together, we can build a sustainable and prosperous future for all.”

An official of the Sergeant at Arms Office of the National Assembly, Malam Sani Abdullahi Zakari, who received the group’s position paper, expressed gratitude to the protesters for the peaceful manner in which they conducted themselves. He promised to convey their position to the leadership of the National Assembly accordingly.

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