Talks between the Nigerian government and the country’s two main workers’ unions ended in a deadlock Friday, two days before the expiration of a 14-day ultimatum issued to the government to reverse hikes in fuel prices and Value Added Tax (VAT).
President of the Trade Union Congress (TUC), Peter Esele, said no agreement was reached during the talks, presided over by the Secretary to the Federal Government, Babagana Kingibe.
He said Kingibe appealed to the unions to shelve their planned nation-wide strike to protest the increases, because they were made by the immediate past administration.
But Esele said the unions had no choice but to embark on strike, though he gave no specific date the strike would start.
President of the Nigeria Labour Congress (NLC), Abdulwaheed Omar, said the congress would call a meeting of its decision-making organ to decide the next line of action.
Indications are that the meeting will hold on Monday.
The federal government, which raised fuel prices by 15 percent last month, had said it was aimed at reducing the 200 billion naira annual subsidy on fuel (130 naira=USD1)
Analysts however contested the figure, slamming the government for using a spurious subsidy claim to inflict further hardship on the people.