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Nigerians take to the streets

Wednesday, January 11, 2012 - 01:38

Jan. 10 - Thousands flock to a rally in the Nigerian capital but President Goodluck Jonathan shows no signs of weakening over a contested fuel subsidy. Katharine Jackson reports.

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Tens of thousands of Nigerians flood the streets of Lagos on Tuesday. Many more stay home from work as most banks and offices remain closed. Across the country for a second day, they are protesting President Goodluck Jonathan's removal of a fuel subsidy...a move that has doubled the price of gas in a country where many live on less than two dollars a day. SOUNDBITE (English) PROTESTER KAYODE BAYEWU SAYING: "We are expecting him to change his mind (President Jonathan) but in a situation where he is not ready to change his mind, I believe we are going to continue the strike, by the time we continue the strike" Police shot dead three protesters and wounded more than two dozen on Monday, firing bullets and tear gas to disperse crowds. Still despite the unrest, Jonathan vows to keep the policy in place. Protesters say the president they elected has forgotten the people. (SOUNDBITE) (English) ENGINEER, ADEBOYE FOROWA, SAYING: "The problem we have here in this country is that the people who lead this country are simply out of touch" Nigeria is Africa's biggest oil producer. More than 200 million dollars in oil exports leave its shores each day. Economists say the subsidy has fueled corruption...funneling public funds into the hands of a cartel. The government promises to use money saved by removing the subsidy for anti-poverty programs. After decades of corruption, many Nigerians say that promise is empty. Katharine Jackson, Reuters.

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Nigerians take to the streets

Wednesday, January 11, 2012 - 01:38