Minimum Wage: Labour Dares Governors, Issues New Deadline

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The Nigeria Labour Congress (NLC) and the Trade Union Congress (TUC) have admonished states that have not complied with the implementation of the N30,000 new National Minimum Wage to do so before January 31 deadline, to prevent industrial action.

In a statement signed by the President of TUC, Quadri Olaleye, on Thursday, after a National Executive Meeting (NEC) in Lagos, confirmed that it has directed all state chapters to start the mobilisation of their members for strike ahead of January 31.

“As at now and by our record, only six states have signed and commenced implementation, 15 states are in the process of negotiation, while the rest are yet to commence negotiation.

“We want to assure them that this is not an empty threat. Labour will shut down any state that has not yet started the implementation or negotiation,” Mr Olaleye said after the NEC meeting.

On the issue of insecurity in the country, Mr Olaleye called on the Federal Government to intensify “practical efforts towards wiping out killings, kidnapping and insurgency”.

He further stated that the congress had resolved to participate in ”a global rally against war” slated for January 25.

He added that the union also condemned in its entirety all forms of casualisation and “slave labour” in Nigeria.

“The Government is hereby advised to extend Local Content Policy as applied in the oil sector to be applicable to other sectors of the economy,” he said.

Meanwhile, the Nigeria Labour Congress (NLC), in a separate communiqué, issued at the end of its meeting with State Council Chairmen on December 12, said it would not be able to guarantee industrial peace and harmony in states that failed to conclude negotiations and begin payment of the new minimum wage by December 31.

The new wage structure was signed into law by the president, Muhammadu Buhari, on April 18, 2019, while both the Federal Government and labour unions agreed on consequential adjustments on October 18, 2019, after negotiations.

After the agreement between the FG and labour, negotiations shifted to states, with the NLC directing its state leaders to commence negotiations with their governors.

However, the unions had said negotiations must be completed on December 31, 2019, which was not done.

Currently, no fewer than 15 states are yet to conclude negotiations on the N30,000 new minimum wage a week after the expiration of the initial deadline.

States like Anambra, Bayelsa Benue, Cross River, Ekiti, Enugu, Gombe, Kwara, Niger, Ogun, Osun, Oyo, Rivers, Sokoto, and Taraba are yet to agree on the consequential adjustments of salaries as a result of the new minimum wage.


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