The Presidency on Sunday said ‘enemies of Nigeria’ had wanted to use the now suspended industrial action by Labour Unions to sponsor and encourage discord and anarchy, either for selfish ends or as revenge for perceived injuries.
The government said having lost in their bid to use the strike to unleash mayhem; those ‘enemies of Nigeria’ have resorted to venting their frustration on the leaderships of the organized labour, accusing them of compromise.
Labour unions had planned an industrial action scheduled to commence last week Monday over the increase in fuel price and electricity tariff.
The action was however suspended after a meeting they had with Federal Government on Sunday and lasted early hours of Monday. Their action attracted criticisms from stakeholders, especially activists, who felt the labour leaders sold out.
But, in a statement on Sunday by the Adviser to the President on Media and Publicity, Femi Adesina, titled “Beware of people smarting from suspended labour strike for selfish reasons –Presidency”, the presidency mocked those venting their frustrations over the suspension of the strike.
He said the critics became disgruntled because they had apparently perfected plans to use the strike by the labour unions as a smokescreen to unleash anarchy on the land.
He further claimed that some people had wanted to use the suspended strike as an opportunity for a pound of flesh, which they calculated would weaken the government so much, and influence the 2023 elections.
While commending the organised labour unions for putting the country first by suspending the action, the presidential spokesman urged Nigerians to beware of those he claimed are sponsoring and encouraging discord and anarchy, either for selfish ends or as revenge for perceived injuries.
He described those who fall under the category as enemies of the country.
The statement read, “Since organised labour toed the path of sense and sensibility last week, seeing reason with the imperatives of fuel price adjustment, and opening a further window of dialogue on the service based electricity tariff, some groups of Nigerians have been dolorous, disgruntled, and disconsolate.
“They had apparently perfected plans to use the strike by the labour unions as smokescreen to unleash anarchy on the land, fomenting mayhem and civil disobedience. But the plan blew up in their faces, and they have been in severe pains since then. They have launched series of tirades against organized labour.
“For some interest groups, their intention was to use the umbrella of the strike to further their whimsical and pie-in-the-sky dream of a revolution in the country. It went bust in their faces.
“For some others, Bitter-Enders, who have remained entrenched in pre-2015 and 2019 elections mode, it was opportunity to avenge the 2012 Occupy Nigeria protests, which they believe largely devalued the government of the day, and led to its eventual ouster in 2015.
“The strike that was to have come up last week, they wanted to use as opportunity for a pound of flesh, which they calculated would weaken the government so much, and influence the 2023 elections. For them, it was all about hanker for power, its trappings and appurtenances. Nothing about love of country. They have since then been calling organised labour all sorts of names, claiming they deceived Nigerians.
“The times in which we live-with severe security, economic and social challenges-call for all hands to be on deck, and goodwill and support for government, as it strives to put the nation on an even keel. We commend organised labour for putting the country first.
“Those sponsoring and encouraging discord and anarchy, either for selfish ends, or as revenge for perceived injuries, are enemies of the country. Nigerians are urged to beware of them, as the Muhammadu Buhari government is only interested in engendering better quality of life for the citizenry. Nothing more.”
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