WORKERS AND COMMUNITY PEOPLE ARISE!
WORKERS AND COMMUNITY PEOPLE ARISE!
Say No To Fuel Scarcity, Planned Fuel Price Hike, Reduction In Workers Salary, Electricity Tariff Hike And Crazy Bills
Enough is enough. It is time to stop simply complaining. It is time to start to fight back. This is why we of the Socialist Party of Nigeria (SPN) call on the mass of working people and youth to resist with mass actions all forms of socio-economic attacks on their living conditions. We hold that the current protracted fuel scarcity is just the latest of such attacks and should be resisted with mass actions organized by working people and youth in the neighborhoods and communities. We view the fuel scarcity as a huge failure on the part of the Buhari-led Federal Government, which have failed to live up to its purported “change” mantra, with which it campaigned vigorously at the last election.
We call on the mass of the working people and youth to also prepare to resist any move to remove the so-called fuel subsidy or increase fuel price. We call for the widest mass mobilization against such steps as they represent efforts of the ruling elite to offload the burden of the current socio-economic crisis onto the backs of the working people and the poor.
We call on the working people and youth to reject and resist the plan to hike electricity tariff as disclosed by Vice President Yemi Osinbajo and Minister of Power Babatunde Fashola. We cannot pay for darkness. Already the current tariff regime contains a fraudulent charge of N750 called “fixed charge” which we are made to pay whether there is power supply or not. This is exploitative. Worse still, many consumers are exploited through “estimated crazy billing”. We must reject all forms of exploitation. We should organise ourselves in communities against electricity tariff hike and crazy billing. We should demand regular power supply, issuance of pre-paid meters to all consumers and scrapping of fixed charge. We call on the labour movement to unify the struggles in communities against exploitation and poor power supply with nationally coordinated activities including a day of nationwide mass action.
We also condemn the plan by state Governors to slash the piecemeal N18, 000 minimum wage. We call on the Nigeria Labour Congress (NLC) and the Trade Union Congress (TUC) to respond to this threat by calling a one-day warning strike action and mass protests to send a clear signal that the mass of working people would not take any attack on their living conditions lightly. The demands should also include payment of all arrears of salaries and pensions as well as regular and prompt payment of full salaries and allowances, along with a higher minimum wage.
We also condemn all forms of attacks on the democratic rights of the working people. We condemn the Ambode-led Lagos State Government for the activities of the Lagos State Special Offences Enforcement Taskforce and the Kick Against Indiscipline (KAI) which have been arresting and dumping into jail, many youths whose only crime is the fact that they are jobless, homeless and poor. We oppose criminalization of the poor. Unemployment and homelessness are conditions forced on people by the inequality of the capitalist system and corruption of politicians. We therefore call for mass actions in the communities to resist these attacks on democratic rights. We demand payment of a living allowance to all unemployed people. We say no to casualization and demand the provision of decent minimum wage jobs with trade union rights.
We hold that as long as the current ruling elite and the entire capitalist system are intact, these attacks will continue in the coming period. This is why the SPN is actively campaigning for an end to capitalism and the enthronement of a working people’s government that can establish a democratic socialist Nigeria. We hold that the workers’ movement must rise to the task of building a broader mass working people’s political alternative that can fight to take political power from the capitalist robbers.
We call on the leadership of the labour movement to link the resistance against wage cut with the task of building such a mass political alternative. We call for a working people’s political summit to chart the roadmap to a new working people’s party, given the reality that the misnamed Labour Party does not stand for the interest of working and poor Nigerians.
At the same time we need to start organizing ourselves in workplaces, communities and schools. Local trade unions and community organisations should take initiatives to kickstart campaigning and pile pressure on the national labour leaders to act.
As part of building an alternative for working people we call for support for the Socialist Party of Nigeria (SPN) in its struggle with the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) over its registration having fulfilled all requirements under the law. We hold that it has been convenient for INEC to issue “briefcase” parties certificates of registration while a party like the SPN with links with the workers, youth and the poor is denied same. The SPN’s registration would mean that there would be a party which, representing the millions and not the billionaires, could play an important part in building the mass movement needed to defeat once and for all the elite profiting at the expense of the rest of us.