|Dr. Dipo Fashina, Chair, Joint Action Front (JAF)|
The Joint Action Front (JAF) organised on October 31st 2012 a NATIONAL SYMPOSIUM on "NIGERIA: the Growing instability, which way forward" as part of its sustained programme of action for the socio-economic transformation of Nigeria, and also, towards mobilising Nigerians for resistance against the background of deepening crises in the polity as manifested in fuel scarcity and price hike, flood disaster across the country, high cost of food, general insecurity, etc.
The well attended Symposium moderated by JAF Chairperson Dr Dipo Fashina had participants drawn from the trade unions, academic union, workers in the informal sector, okada riders, students, professionals (medical and legal), civil society groups and the media.
After an exhaustive and highly participatory session, the following resolutions were adopted:
- JAF calls for a sustained resistance to all oppressive policies in Nigeria, no matter what state, irrespective of the ethnic nationality and religious faith of the perpetrators of oppression.
- Calls for action against all inhuman policies and laws that deny workers their wages and tools of earning their wages.
- Consequently, the Symposium resolved to hold a Day of united action of all JAF affiliates and relevant civil society organisations in solidarity with the Okada workers in Lagos State to protest and resist the cruel and military style injustice they have been receiving in the hands of the Lagos state government.
- JAF supports unequivocally the rights of Okada workers to their livelihood and to live under just laws. The Lagos State Government has no right whatsoever to burn the okada bikes it wrongfully and unconstitutionally confiscated. It must pay compensation to the owners of the burnt bikes.
- Calls on Lagos State to stop its dangerous divisive politics among okada associations; and to respect the rights of individual citizens to belong to an association of their choice.
- JAF reminds those who are calling out armed state apparatus against poor citizens today that they are legitimizing military options to civilian problems, Hence, JAF urges Nigerians to resist the desperation of the Lagos State Government to draw Nigeria back to an era of militarism that Nigerians will like to forget.
- JAF alerts Nigerians that the on-going privatisation exercise such as privatization of electricity, like the failed privatization of airlines and Banks will not solve the problem of giving every Nigerian household a readily available and affordable electricity supply. But it will transfer the people’s assets into the hands of the same interests that sabotaged PHCN and Nigerians must rise to resist it.
- JAF restates its commitment to intensify the struggle to build the political resistance of workers and the oppressed in Nigeria towards ensuring System Change. System change will put a stop to exploitative and oppressive policies and usher a true people’s democracy.
DR. DIPO FASHINA COMRADE ABIODUN AREMU
JAF Chairperson JAF Secretary