NLC flays Ngige over minimum wage take – off date
*Insists In N66, 500 Salary
The Nigeria Labour Congress (NLC) has berated the Minister of Labour and Employment, Dr. Chris Ngige, over non-feasibility of commencement of new minimum wage in the third quarter of this year.
President of NLC, Ayuba Wabba, said in Abuja, yesterday, that Ngige statement smacks of insensitivity and an abuse of Nigerian workers.
Wabba said many Nigerian workers who are not as privileged as Ngige, who collects salaries, estacodes when embark on assignments both within and outside of Nigeria, amongst other opportunities within government, rely on their meagre monthly salaries for survival.
He highlighted that the leadership of the NLC regard the gaffe as inconsistent with the fervour so far demonstrated by the tripartite committee set up by President Muhammadu Buhari to review the national minimum wage.
He added: “Our concern is, who is the minister of Labour speaking for? Nigerian workers want to know who has sent Ngige on this nebulous errand. On whose side is the minister of Labour on the upward review of the national minimum wage?”
Wabba explained that Labour’s position that it would expedite actions at the level of the tripartite committee on the minimum wage and ensure that discussions and negotiations are concluded by August this year, so that Nigerian workers can start benefitting as quickly as possible from the new national minimum wage.
He reminded the minister that the review of the wage is long overdue, adding: “The 2011 Belgore Tripartite Committee set up by government agreed that the review of the wage should happen every five years. It is now close to eight years that the last review took place.
“Nigerian workers demand a change in the humiliating culture of forcing workers to bargain too hard and wait too long for meagre increases in their salaries,” he said.
Wabba said Congress would disregard Ngige’s statement and continue to insist on the timely commencement of the N66, 500 minimum wages demanded by labour movement.
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