Factbox: Nigeria's strike enters second week

Sun Jan 15, 2012 12:39pm EST

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(Reuters) - Nigeria's strike looks set to continue into a second week after the failure of weekend talks to settle a crippling dispute over the scrapping of fuel subsidies.

Here are some details about the strike and day-by-day developments:

* WHAT IS THE DISPUTE ABOUT?

- Nigeria's fuel regulator announced on January 1, 2012 that the fuel subsidy would end immediately as part of efforts to cut government spending. Petrol prices have more than doubled to around 150 naira ($0.93) per liter and protests have erupted across the country.

- Around 70 percent of Nigerians live in poverty and view cheap fuel as the only benefit they get from an oil-rich state.

- Economists say the subsidy encouraged corruption and waste and transferred billions of dollars of government cash to a cartel of fuel importers. The government estimated it would save a trillion naira ($6 billion) in 2012 by eliminating it.

* THE STRIKE:

January 8 - Unions launch an indefinite nationwide strike.

- Police shoot dead three people and wound more than 24 while dispersing protesters in the commercial hub Lagos and the largest northern city of Kano.

- Production of Nigeria's average two million barrels of crude oil a day continues.

January 9 - Tens of thousands march as banks, petrol stations and domestic airports are closed.

- Unions express anger at the deaths and urge the public to continue the strike until Jonathan restores the subsidy.

January 10 - Thousands take to the streets as the government's attorney general says striking public sector workers will not be paid, after the strike was ruled unlawful by the courts.

- Offices of international companies such as Shell and Exxon Mobil are shut. But Shell and the state oil company say output is unaffected.

January 11 - Oil workers threaten to shut down oil output. At a rally in Lagos, protesters chant slogans urging the government to go after corrupt leaders, not state welfare.

January 12 - President Goodluck Jonathan and labour unions hold talks to end the dispute. Abdulwaheed Omar, president of the Nigeria Labour Congress, says strikes will continue until an agreement has been reached.

- The strikes are costing Nigeria around 100 billion naira ($617 million) a day, central bank governor Lamido Sanusi says.

January 13 - Ships are unable to deliver fuel to Nigeria as strikes force ports to close.

January 14 - Unions and President Jonathan meet but fail to reach a compromise in talks.

January 15 - The main oil union says it will maintain output, not joining the walkouts for the time being. The government says more talks will be held.

- The Nigeria Labour Congress and Trade Union Congress say strikes, suspended on January 14 for the talks, will resume on January 16.

(Reporting by David Cutler, London Editorial Reference Unit)

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Comments (1)
diphie wrote:
Please can some one advice the President Goodluck Jonathan to call for a COOL OFF time may be 30,60 or 90 days and keep the negotiations still we come to a deal and keep the oil price at N65. Nigeria can not handle two crisis at the same time this may paralyse this country. Again, no need for this killings Nigeria is bigger than President Goodluck he will come and go and Nigeria will still be here.

Thanks again

Mazi Dave Iphie

Jan 15, 2012 5:14pm EST  --  Report as abuse
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