Nigeria: Labour Insists On N30,000 Minimum Wage, Begins Nationwide Strike Nov 6

Photo: Vanguard
(file photo).
22 October 2018

Organised labour, comprising the Nigeria Labour Congress (NLC), Trade Union Congress (TUC) and United Labour Congress (ULC) yesterday resolved to resume its nationwide strike, November 6, if the federal government fails to agree on the N30,000 minimum wage.

In a statement jointly signed by NLC President, Ayuba Wabba, TUC president, Kaigama Bobboi and ULC president, Joe Ajero, labour accused the government of sabotaging the quick passage of a new minimum wage

The organised labour argued that it is not true that they proposed N30,000 as the new national minimum wage, stressing that labour only accepted N30,000 as a compromise to demonstrate the willingness of Nigerian workers to make sacrifices towards nation building.

The Labour leaders said there was a document signaling this agreement that had already been signed by some parties.

They said workers will not accept anything to the contrary, adding that besides, the committee has agreed on the figure during its last sitting.

The statement reads partly, "As far as Nigerian workers are concerned and as represented by us, we shall no longer negotiate on a figure for the new minimum wage having reached an agreement on this during the last sitting of the tripartite committee.

"We cannot continue discussing a figure that has already been agreed procedurally within the Committee. What we are waiting for is for the federal Government to immediately set in motion the necessary machinery for turning the agreement into a Bill for onward submission to the NASS where we expect the Presidency to work together with the Legislators to make it a law so that it can be implemented quickly."

Labour said Nigerians should not forget the promises made by the Government while pledging to return to the negotiation table leading to the suspension of the strike action, regretting that the road to a new minimum wage has been difficulty and tortuous.

Labour posited that the attempt by the feseral government to implement the no-work, no-pay policy is targeted to intimidate and cow the trade union movement and its leadership in the country all in a bid to subjugate the will of Nigerian workers over the national minimum wage.

The statement reads furthers, "Imagine Governors forum that has 6 representatives in the tripartite committee jumping in to make excuses after its representatives had made their submissions in the committee! We shall consider any Governor saying that he is unable to pay as unpatriotic and, an enemy of Nigerian workers and masses. We shall vote them out in 2019.

"We the organised labour in Nigeria having not seen any sign that this government is willing to demonstrate honour and integrity in relating with Nigerian workers and masses have resolved to as follows:

Organise a A day of National Outrage and mourning which will be used to sensitize Nigerians on our plight and on the issues at stake. This shall take place in all states of the federation including Abuja on Tuesday, the 30th day of October, 2018

A meeting of various organs of the Unions will hold as appropriate

On Friday, the 2nd day of November, 2018, a Joint Central Working Committee (CWC) meeting of all the Labour Centres in Nigeria shall hold to receive reports and make final preparations for our ultimate engagement with the federal government on this matter. This is the first time in the history of this nation in recent times that such meeting will take place and this goes a long way to show the seriousness with which Nigerian workers and its leadership hold this matter

"If nothing is responsibly done by the federal government to meet our demands, on Monday, the 6th day of November, we shall embark on a nation-wide strike to compel this government to show more sensitivity to the plight of Nigerians and the suffering that is decimating our people on daily basis."

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