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Minimum Wage: Labour Organs To Meet, May Resume Strike Tuesday


(AFRICAN EXAMINER) – The Organised Labour said the one-week grace period given to the Federal Government last Tuesday, June 4, 2024, would expire by the midnight of Tuesday, June 11, 2024.

Labour said should the Federal Government and National Assembly fail to act on the demands of workers by tomorrow (Tuesday), the organs of the Nigeria Labour Congress (NLC) and the Trade Union Congress (TUC) would meet to decide on the resumption of the nationwide industrial action relaxed last week.

The NLC Official said, “The Federal Government and the National Assembly have the call now. It is not our call. Our demand is there for them (the government) to look at and send an Executive Bill to the National Assembly, and for the National Assembly to look at what we have demanded, the various facts of the law, and then come up with a National Minimum Act that meets our demands.

“If that does not meet our demand, we have given the Federal Government a one-week notice to look at the issues and that one week expires tomorrow (Tuesday). If after tomorrow, we have not seen any tangible response from the government, the organs of the Organised Labour will meet to decide on what next.”

When asked what the decision of Labour would be should the government insists on ₦62,000, he said, “It was clear what we said. We said we are relaxing a nationwide indefinite strike. It’s like putting a pause on it. So, if you put a pause on something and that organs that govern us as trade unions decide that we should remove that pause, it means that we go back to what was in existence before.”

He said Labour won’t accept any ₦62,000 or ₦100,000 “starvation wage” as the minimum wage for Nigerian workers.

He insisted on ₦250,000, labour’s latest demand at the last meeting of the Tripartite Committee on Minimum Wage on Friday, as the living wage for an average Nigerian worker.

He said labour won’t accept the latest government’s offer of ₦62,000 and the ₦100,000 proposal by some individuals and economists.

Onyeka said, “We have never considered accepting ₦62,000 or any other wage that we know is below what we know is able to take Nigerian workers home. We will not negotiate a starvation wage.

“We have never contemplated ₦100,000 let alone ₦62,000. We are still at ₦250,000, that is where we are, and that is what we considered enough concession to the government and the other social partners in this particular situation. We are not just driven by frivolities but the realities of the market place; realities of things we buy every day: bag of rice, yam, garri, and all of that.”

 


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