Nigeria’s minister appeals to Labour for a rethink

Albert Akpor &
Evelyn Usman

06 January 2012, Sweetcrude, LAGOS — Ahead of the planned nationwide strike called by Nigeria Labour Congress, NLC and Trade Union Congress, TUC, the Minister of Defence, Dr Bello Mohammed, in Lagos, appealed to Nigerians to have a rethink by giving the Federal Government opportunity to prove its transformation agenda.

Meanwhile, Chief of Defence Staff, Air Marshal Oluseye Petirin, has assured Nigerians that the insurgence of Islamic fundamentalist group, Boko Haram, would soon be a thing of the past.

The defence chief, who spoke on the occasion of the reception of the newly acquired Nigerian Navy Ship, NNS Thunder, at the Western Naval Command, Apapa, described members of the Islamic sect as “cowards,” adding that the resort to suicide bombing to drive home whatever reason for their dastardly action was an express admission of defeat.

Mohammed, who was represented on the occasion by the Minister of State for Defence, Dr Erelu Obada, stressed the need for Nigerians to be calm, adding that Nigerians should wait and see the outcome of the removal of subsidy before reacting.

Rather than agitating for strike, he suggested that more time should be given to weigh Federal Government’s decision, adding that only then would there be no moral justification to hold government accountable, if the current plan fails.

Obada said: “We are all Nigerians. Even Mr President himself feels a lot of pains. Is there any other way to ensure that Nigeria survives economically? If there is, let somebody tell us.

“What I will advise the people, is to allow this to work for a while and let us see how it goes and how it is going to benefit Nigeria. We cannot just throw it away because no president or government would want to inflict pains upon his people.”

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