The National Assembly (NASS) has pledged to review and address the organised Labour demands within the next one week.
The Senate President, Godswill Akpabio said this when organised labour took its mass protest to the National Assembly Complex where it submitted a list of its demands on Wednesday in Abuja.
The mass protest was organised by the Nigeria Labour Congress (NLC) and the Trade Union Congress(TUC) over anti-poor and workers policies of the Federal Government.
The protesters carried placards with inscription such; “We condemn increase in school fees, “Stop importation of Petrol, Revive the Refineries,” ”Increase in price of fuel responsible for inflation, poverty among others.
Akpabio who was represented by, Ali Ndume, Chief Whip of the Senate assured the protesting workers that NASS was in support of their struggle.
“We have keenly followed what is going on when we realized that there was a breakdown in the discussions between the Presidency and the NLC. I want to assure you that we will find a permanent solution to this.
“Please give us one week and we will make progress and if you are not satisfied with the progress we are making, then you can take further action,”he said.
He also said that a committee had been setup to look the demands of organised labour.
He added that by close of the day or tomorrow, they will call the first meeting with labour to start the discussions and the engagements would continue.
“We will do our best as your representatives to come out with solutions acceptable to you and realistic enough,”he said.
Ndume also assured that the letter which contained their demands and terms of reference would be handed over to the leadership of the senate.
Earlier, NLC President, Mr Joe Ajaero said the nationwide mass protest was to expressed workers’ frustrations and grievances of the anti-poor policies that had brought hardship on Nigerians.
He added, ”for almost two months now, we have been engaged in discussions without fruitful motion. We got frustrated.”
He however, said that the demands of the labour include the immediate implementation of the resolutions jointly signed with organised Labour and government.
Ajaero also called for the immediate reversal of all anti-poor policies of government including the recent hike in PMS price, school fees and VAT.
He also urged the Federal Government to fix the countrys’ local refineries in Porthacourt, Warri and Kaduna.
According to him, release the eight months withheld salaries of the university lectures and workers.
“Accord appropriate recognition and support to the Presidential Steering Committee and the work of its Subcommittees.
“Also put a stop to in human actions and policies of government,” he added.
Also speaking, Mr Festus Osifo, TUC President called for the reduction in the cost of governance.
Osifo said that the governments was “insensitive to the plight of the masses.”
“The Nigerian masses have been battered. They have gone through excruciating pains but in all of this, we have not heard what the President has to say about the cost of governance.
“We want you in the National Assembly to show sacrifice. We want you to cut down your budget.
“We want you to buy Nigerian made cars and not imported vehicles because you are creating jobs over there and importing poverty here.
“We want you to show leadership because we elected you to work for us,” he said.(NAN)