By Moses Uwagbale
The Trade Union Congress of Nigeria (TUC) has called on governments at all levels, employers and all workers to collaborate in reorganising the economy to avoid a looming recession.
TUC’s President, Mr Quadri Olaleye, made the call in a statement on Thursday ahead of ‘Workers’ Day, which is celebrated every year on May 1.
Olaleye had expressed worry over how the country would survive COVID-19 and build an economy that would keep it out of imminent recession.
“This May Day is an unusual one; it coincides with a period the world is facing possible extinction if we are not careful.
“Distinguished comrades, the speech will not be a story telling but practical steps on how to steer the country back to shape after the elimination of coronavirus.
“Five months away from today our country will be 60 years.
“It is on that note that we came up with our theme, “60 Years of Nationhood: Insecurity, Wage Poverty and the Future of Work in Nigeria”.
“All the issues captured in our theme are critical and can define our political, economic and welfare trajectories as a people, ” he said.
The president highlighted the various sectors of the economy that needed attention in order to avoid recession to include health, labour, agriculture, oil and gas, electricity, among others.
He called for the fixing of the refineries and building of new ones, which he said would shield the economy from the vagaries and vicissitudes of international oil prices and politics.
Olaleye also called on governments at all levels to exploit the potential of the agricultural sector.
He addedd that Small and Medium Scale businesses, especially informal sector, should also be encouraged because of the critical role it played in employment.
“We also advocate reduction of food and drug prices to enable Nigerians who survived the pandemic to recuperate well.
“Furthermore, Covid -19 pandemic met us in a state of unpreparedness; the chief of Staff to the president, Mr Abba Kyari, died of Corona virus complications and his death presents us a great opportunity to revisit our health sector challenges.
“All existing federal teaching and specialists hospitals should be upgraded and equipped with the state of the art medical equipment to meet the modern day standards and the new emerging disease conditions, ” he said.