Nigeria Braces for Nationwide Strikes

Posted January 8th, 2012 at 5:25 pm (UTC-5)
Leave a comment

Long lines snaked through Nigerian markets and fueling stations Sunday as residents stocked up on supplies ahead of a planned national strike.

The country's major labor unions have announced a strike set to begin Monday over their discontent at a government decision to end the country's fuel subsidy.

During an emergency session Sunday, lawmakers from the House of Representatives voted for a resolution calling on the government to restore the subsidies, which cost the country upwards of $8 billion.

Gas prices in the country have increased from around 40 cents a liter to 80 cents a liter since the removal of the subsidies on January 1. The cuts have spurred an increase in food prices and transportation costs, as well as widespread protests.

Nigeria is a large producer of crude oil, but it depends largely on imports for fuel because its refineries are in disrepair after years of mismanagement.