The Coalition for Revolution has called on Nigerian workers to engage the government by mass action and protest over the recent increase in fuel price and economic hardship.
CORE described as “wicked” the increase of petrol pump price to N170 by the Petroleum Products Marketing Company.
Defending the increase, Timipre Sylva, Minister of State for Petroleum Resources, said the announcement of a COVID-19 vaccine by Pfizer triggered a slight increase in the price of crude oil in the global market.
CORE in a statement by its Co-conveners, Baba Aye and Gbenga Komolafe, stated that the All Progressives Congress-led regime does not have the interest of the poor masses at heart, adding that many small and medium-scale operators in the informal economy had been ruined as a result of the bad policies by the government.
It also said that working class people were facing a barrage of economic attacks as the unemployment rate in the country continues to increase.
It said, “The composite unemployment rate rose by 12.5% in less than two years to 55.7% in the second quarter of 2020. And tens of thousands of those who still have jobs have faced wage cuts.
“Credit facilities have dried up along with their stocks of goods and capital. The N50bn support for the informal economy is both insufficient and not accessible for the bulk of working people in the sector.
“Despite all these, state governments have also further burdened the poor. Several states have been illegally making deductions of up to 20% from the salaries of public sector workers, for some nebulous COVID-19 funds.”
CORE stated that the economic hardship in the country cannot continue as it called on the people to hit the streets in protest.
It also asked the people to oppose the policies of deregulation and liberalisation of the economy, which it says serves the interest of these rich elites and the international financial institutions.
The group said, “This situation cannot be allowed to go on. We cannot be made to keep wallowing in poverty while a few rich elites keep getting richer. Just three billionaires in the country have as much wealth as half of the population, according to Oxfam, while 105 million people live in abject poverty.
“We, the poor masses, must not allow ourselves to be sacrificed on the altar of the profit-seeking dictates of imperialist forces and the local ruling elites. We can stop these only through struggle.
“A general strike along with the mass protests would have brought the dictatorial regime to its knees, undermining its capacity for repression which it brought to bear on the protesting youths as a massacre.”
SaharaReporters, New York