Nigeria News: Goodluck backs down on fuel price hikes

People gather during a protest against the scrapping of oil subsidy at Gani Fawehinmi Park, Ojota in Lagos on Jan. 12, 2012. Nigerian oil workers vowed Thursday to begin shutting down production of Africa's top crude exporter, piling intense pressure on the government ahead of talks on the fourth day of a nationwide strike.
Pius Utomi Ekpei

NAIROBI, Kenya — Facing union strikes and street protests over his decision to remove fuel subsidies Nigeria's President Goodluck Jonathan has caved in, a bit.

When the president announced an end to fuel subsidies on New Year's Day the price of petrol at the pump more than doubled triggering nationwide strikes and protests that have brought the West African nation to a halt.

Read more on GlobalPost: Nigeria's fuel protests suspended for weekend talks

Now, as the strikes enter their second week, Jonathan has announced that a partial subsidy will be reinstated.

Petrol prices went from 65 naira ($0.40) to 140 when the subsidy was removed and on Monday it was announced that prices would be reduced by 30 percent in recognition, said the government, of the "hardships being suffered" by the people.

Read more on GlobalPost: Deadly clashes as gas price strike shuts down Nigeria

Petrol will now cost 97 naira a liter.

The announcement came after weekend talks with unions collapsed.

It is unclear whether the partial backtrack will be enough to appease the angry people and stave off the protests.