By Hilary Akalugwu
Nsukka (Enugu State), Sept. 23, 2020 Some residents of Nsukka in Nsukka Local Government Area of Enugu State have urged the Federal Government to revert to the old prices of petrol and electricity in the country.
They said that such reversal would help to avert Nigeria Labour Congress’ (NLC), Sept. 28, proposed nationwide strike and also reduce the hardships caused by the increment on the masses.
The residents in separate interviews with journalists in Nsukka on Wednesday described the Federal Government’s decision to increase the pump price of petrol and electricity tariff as ill-timed.
Dr Dom Anyadike a Senior Lecturer in the department of General Studies, University of Nigeria Nsukka (UNN), decried the increase in prices.
He said it was unfortunate that government did not consider the hardship Nigerians were going through as a result of many months of lock-down caused by COVID-19 pandemic.
“To me government has no reason whatsoever to increase the pump price of petrol from N145 to N151.56 when many families cannot afford two square meals in a day.
“Government should as matter of urgency rescind its decision by returning to the old pump price of petrol and electricity tariff,” he said.
Mrs Chinwe Odimegwu, a banker said even if government wanted to increase the petrol pump price and electricity tariff it could have done that by 2021.
Odimegwu said this was to enable Nigerians to slightly recover from the pains and hardship caused by many months of lockdown as a result of the COVID-19 pandemic.
“As a result of many months of lockdown many people in the private sector lost their jobs while others have their monthly salary cut.
“Many parents now find it difficult to feed their families as prices of food stuffs in the market have increased astronomically.
“As schools in the country are getting set to reopen, many parents will find it difficult to get money to pay their children’s school fees while government is busy increasing the price of petrol and electricity,’’ she said.
Mr Richard Ozioko, a trader, urged government to consider the interest of Nigerians and cancel the increase in petrol pump price and electricity tariff.
“As a trader I know how much money I lost in about four months markets in Nsukka were closed as a result of COVID-19; I used half of my business capital to feed my family.
“Government should consider the interests of Nigerians as well the negative effects the NLC nationwide strike will have on the economy and rescind its decision on petrol price increase and electricity tariff.
“Many Nigerians are suffering as the increase on petrol pump price has resulted in increase in prices of goods and services, especially food items,” he said.
It would be recalled that the Federal Government had through its agency Pipeline and Product Marketing Company (PPMC), announced that from Sept. 2, pump price of petrol would increase from N145 to N151.56.