President Jonathan Fails To Attend May Day Rally For The First Time

President Jonathan Fails To Attend May Day Rally For The First Time

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President Goodluck Jonathan at the UN General Assembly

The May Day celebrations which held in Abuja yesterday Friday, May 1, 2015 at the Eagle Square saw the absence of the President from the yearly event for the first time since he became Nigeria’s substantive president.

Representing the President at the event was the Labour Minister Senator Joel Ikenya. Labour leaders speaking at the event said that the non provision for subsidy in the 2015 budget that had just been passed was a booby trap and a recipe for disaster. the senate through the Chairman of the finance community has explained that provision for subsidy were made but to a more reduced sum of 143 billion Naira contrary to reports in the media that no provision for subsidy had been made.

Factional presidents of the Nigeria Labour Congress, Ayuba Wabba, and Trade Union Congress, Bobboi Kaigama, spoke for Labour at the event, with the theme, ‘The working class, democratic consolidation and economic revival: Charting the way to national rebirth’. This year’s event coincided with the one year anniversary of the attack by the insurgent group, Boko Haram, in Nyanya, an outskirt of Abuja, in which some workers returning home from the last year’s May Day celebration lost their lives.

They recalled that similar “booby-trap” of non-provision for fuel subsidy in the budget was set for the then new administration of the late President Umar Yar’Adua and reminded leaders that in 2007, the non-provision for subsidy led to a nationwide strike just one month into the new government. They also disclosed their intention to engage the incoming administration on the need to increase the national minimum wage as soon as it was inaugurated.

Also absent at the meeting were Senate President David Mark, and Speaker of the House of Representatives, Mr. Aminu Tambuwal, who were both scheduled to deliver goodwill messages at the event and were not represented at all.

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