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June 25, 2024

Minimum wage: Approve N250,000 demand to match inflationary trend, Labour tells Tinubu


By Victor AhiumaYoung

Organised Labour has pleaded with President Bola Tinubu to prove his love for Nigerian workers and approve its demand of N250,000 minimum wage to reflect the present inflationary trend in the country.

Speaking to Vanguard, a member of the organised labour negotiating team in the Tripartite Committee of the New National Minimum Wage and President-General of the Maritime Workers Union of Nigeria, MWUN, Prince Adewale Adeyanju, accused state governors of stalling efforts at achieving a reasonable wage for public workers.

He said: “If you are an employer of labour and you do not have the love of your workers in your heart, how do you call yourself an employer of labour? We have problems with OPS and the state governors that believe they cannot afford to pay N30, 000 talk less of the figure that labour is demanding.

”We started having that issue at the negotiating table where they were dragging from N30, 000 to N48, 000 and to N60, 000. They were pricing as if it were tomatoes and onions before they now finally came out and said N62,000.

”Even before they arrived at N62, 000 the Organised Labour was still coming down so that we could be on the same page. Yes, the country is not smiling.

“We all know what the harsh economy situation is and the workers have not been happy with the economic downturn. At the close of negotiations, we had two position papers; one from government and OPS sides that recommended N62, 000 and N250, 000 from the Labour side which includes TUC and NLC.

“The ball now lies on the table of Mr President who I believe that this is an opportunity to show empathy to the whole workers. This minimum wage comes every five year. Between now and five years, what is going to be the impact of the figure of a new minimum wage on the lives of the workers in their various working places.

”That is why we are appealing to him as a friend of workers who persistently promised to give workers a living wage to approve the N250, 000. “Nothing stops him from approving it, but we heard that he said he would only approve what is what the economy can afford.

”As organised labour, we all are citizens of this country and we know the economy can afford our demand. We plead that he should not listen to those greedy governors who want to pay slave wage to continue to maintain their outrageous and ostentatious lifestyle.

”The security vote that they are getting is enough to pay that minimum wage. What are they doing with their security votes? Which security are they providing to the citizens? Some of the governors, the likes of Edo State, have been paying 70,000.”

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