Subsidy Suspension Victory for People United in Resistance – TPAP-M

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THE People’s Alternative Political Movement (TPAP-M) on Tuesday said the postponement of total removal of subsidy on petrol is a victory for Nigerian people who are united in their resistance against the policy.

In a statement on Tuesday, Prof Omotoye Olorode and Jaye Gaskia, both of TPAP-M secretariat, urged Nigerians “to justifiably claim this hasty and inchoate retreat” just as they called for continued vigilance piling of pressure so that it will not be a partial victory.

“We urge the Nigerian people to justifiably claim this hasty and inchoate retreat on the part of government as a victory for a people united in resistance. Nevertheless, we urge continued vigilance and urge that we continue to pile on our pressure, as this is just a partial victory.

“What the government has done is to indicate its decision to postpone the question of fuel price hike for another year or so. And while this concession is a result of our determined rejection of the policy and demonstrated determination to resist all hardships, it nevertheless fails to address the issues responsible for the fuel crisis,” TPAP-M said in the statement.

The organisation, which is a coalition of progressive civil society organisations and activists, also demanded for a definitive end to dependence on importation of petroleum products and the perpetual turnaround maintenance of the nation’s refineries that have gulped over $9.5 billion dollars.

“We have demanded  definitive response as to when as a nation we shall have acquired adequate public sector led domestic refining capacity; we have demanded definitive response with respect to accountability for the $9.5bn expended on refineries that have remained moribund; we have demanded definitive response as to investigating, indicting, prosecuting and punishing those responsible – including political office holders and managements of NNPC and the refineries – for this unprecedented scale of organised economic crime and sabotage of the national economy.

“The government has remained silent on these issues. Until we have definitive responses to these issues, even the question of resting the fuel component of the energy crisis, and resolving the fuel price hike conundrum, would not have been adequately, and more or less permanently, addressed, TPAP-M said.

The full statement reads:

25th January, 2022

URGENT: FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE STILL ON THE ALLEGED POSTPONEMENT OF FUEL “SUBSIDY” WITHDRAWAL (BEING TEXT OF A STATEMENT BY TPAP-M)

In the aftermath of the weeks of mobilisation and preparation for mass resistance, and in the wake of the build up to planned General Mass Protests across the country by the wider labour movement (The trade union federations – NLC & TUC; and our political movement – TPAP-M), scheduled for January 27th and February 1st; the Nigerian Ruling Class in general, and the current regime in particular, has been scrambling from pillar to post, trying to identify the best way to respond to the real threat of popular revolt.

After failing to cajole and or intimidate us to accept their unpopular and anti people policies, they have now suddenly woken up from their self induced slumber, and have now announced, in very public, and inchoate manner that they have no plans at all to remove so-called fuel subsidy and hike fuel prices this year! 

We urge the Nigerian people to justifiably claim this hasty and inchoate retreat on the part of government as a victory for a people united in resistance. Nevertheless, we urge continued vigilance and urge that we continue to pile on our pressure, as this is just a partial victory. 

What the government has done is to indicate its decision to postpone the question of fuel price hike for another year or so. And while this concession is a result of our determined rejection of the policy and demonstrated determination to resist all hardships, it nevertheless fails to address the issues responsible for the fuel crisis.

We have demanded  definitive response as to when as a nation we shall have acquired adequate public sector led domestic refining capacity; we have demanded definitive response with respect to accountability for the $9.5bn expended on refineries that have remained moribund; we have demanded definitive response as to investigating, indicting, prosecuting and punishing those responsible – including political office holders and managements of NNPC and the refineries – for this unprecedented scale of organised economic crime and sabotage of the national economy.

The government has remained silent on these issues. Until we have definitive responses to these issues, even the question of resting the fuel component of the energy crisis, and resolving the fuel price hike conundrum, would not have been adequately, and more or less permanently, addressed.

In understanding that this so-called postponement of withdrawal of the so-called “subsidy” is a fraudulent retreat arising from the power of a Mobilized People, we must emphasize that the threat of the “fuel subsidy” fraud is a particular element of the comprehensive siege on, and abandonment of, the masses of the Nigerian people! The SIEGE is quite advanced and proceeding apace in various other theatres – including the continuing enlargement of public debt; privatization of education, and health care delivery; endemic insecurity; auctioning of public assets to cronies; continuing devaluation of the Naira; killing of local industries like ALL THE REFINERIES; low and unpaid wages; intensifying unemployment and homelessness; and rampaging poverty and mass misery etc.

We must add to all of these, the UNENDING stealing of public resources and the scandalously selective fight against corruption at all levels of governance!

It is this entire SYSTEM THAT MUST BE DISMANTLED; AND NOW!

The retreat of the Nigerian ruling class on the so-called fuel subsidy removal, as temporary and deceitful as it is, tells the masses of our people that “WITH SUSTAINED RESISTANCE AND STRUGGLE, WE CAN BUILD A PEOPLE’S SYSTEM AND A BETTER NIGERIA! It is a reminder to us that when we fight, we can win.

Finally, When #ResistHardship was conceived by The People’s Alternative Political Movement (TPAP-M) and her Allies to prosecute the Campaign and Struggle against Hardship in Nigeria; we were mindful of the fact that the race wasn’t going to be a sprint but a marathon, as well as of the antics of the ruling class. Furthermore, we have made it clear that the struggle goes beyond the energy crisis – beyond hikes in fuel price and electricity tariff, and the rising cost of gas; we have been very clear that in reality this struggle to #ResistHardship is about the general hardship Nigerians face in all ramifications, and across all facets of their lives. 

In view of this position, we urge the Nigerian people to stay the cause, to remain steadfast, to continue to build up the pressure and ramp up the momentum of resistance – Until Total Victory.

We in particular, urge the Nigerian working people, to insist that the leadership of the trade unions and the trade union federations, remain committed to the programs of mass mobilisation that have been publicly announced, as part of our continuing collective efforts to sustain our struggle and resistance, until we have the definitive responses that we have demanded for, until Total Victory!

Join Us: Organize Now! Mobilize Now!! Act Now!!! End Hardship Now!!!!  

Comrade Omotoye Olorode                                       Comrade Jaye Gaskia
TPAP-M Secretariat                                                    TPAP-M Secretariat

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