Nigeria: Minimum Wage - Don't Go On Strike, NECA Tells Labour

11 October 2019

The Nigeria Employers Consultative Association yesterday called on leadership of the organized labour to shelve the proposed October 17 strike over stalemate implementation of the consequential adjustment of the new national minimum wage.

NECA Director-General Timothy Olawale made the call when he led a delegation of the association on a courtesy call to the Minister of Labour and Employment, Chris Ngige.

He said the organized labour should exhaust all mechanisms of social dialogue.

Timothy, however, advised labour to allow the National Industrial Court to adjudicate the matter if the tripartite dialogue fails.

Ngige said: "Consequential Adjustment of the Minimum Wage is the main issue. It is not synonymous with total wage review. It is an adjustment you do consequentially; moving the last man at the last rung of ladder to N30,000 and by so doing, impinging on other salary Grade Levels, therefore must consequentially move them up too. But the consequential movement up doesn't mean you do a percentage of the former minimum wage to the present minimum wage which is 67%. The issue is that they mistakenly lumped the two things together - the issue of consequential movement upstairs and the issue of total wage review."

He said the government personnel cost had risen astronomically from N1.88trn to N3.08trn between 2016 and this year, adding that it was in anticipation of adverse consequences that President Muhammadu Buhari recently set up a five-man Presidential Committee on Salaries and Wages to "evaluate all the earnings in the public service so to make sure that quantum of work vis-a-vis quantum of money was synchronized in such a way that productivity would also come into play."

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