Dayo Johnson Akure
ONDO state workers yesterday said there was no going back on the proposed nationwide industrial action by the labour.
“We received a mail precisely on October 11 from the National Headquarters of NLC alerting us in the state to get prepared for national industrial action that it’s going to be total.Minimum Wage: NLC tells state councils to prepare for strike(Opens in a new browser tab)
“But in that letter we were made to understand that the Federal Government, through the Minister of Labour and Productivity, has invited the labour to a meeting tomorrow (today).
“Don’t forget the ultimatum will lapse on the 16, that’s Wednesday, and if they are able to give us what we have demanded from them, which is 29 percent increment for workers between level seven and fourteen and 24 percent increment for workers between fifteen and seventeen, then there’s no point going on strike.
“Minimum wage is not a gift or award. It is a negotiated salary which was sent to the National Assembly as a bill and passed as a law and assented to by the President himself on April 18. That makes a national issue and a matter of law.
“It is criminal on the part of government not to obey the law of the land which was assented to by the Federal Government.
“It took us two years to get to where we are. Is it going to take us years for them to implement it? We started with N65,000 and came down to N30,000.
“Recently, the Federal Government announced increment in the Value Added Tax(VAT) from 5:0 percent to 7.5 percent. All this has direct negative implications on consumable things.
Lastly, the Naira value deprecated from N180 to $1 to N360 100 percent increase on the same N18,000 in the last couple of years.
“Imagine the N30,000 for a family of six. I am entitled to have four children. N30,000 per month, that’s N1000 per day. That’s six people would have to live on N1000 per day, which less than N200 per person per day. From this we service the rent, we take transport to work everyday, pay children’s school fees.
” The Federal Government wants to give us N30,000 and it increased the VAT. They said the VAT is meant to fund the increment. So, it’s taking back what it’s giving us.
He said “What the labour is looking at is the value, the purchasing power of the money and not the quantum of the money. Is it a crime for the children of the poor to attend public university?”