Organised Labour suspends strike for five days

The Nigeria Labour Congress (NLC) says it is not fixated on a figure as negotiations continue with the Federal Government over a new national minimum wage.

Recall that Organised Labour on Monday declared a strike ove a new minimum wage and the recent hike in electricity tariff for Band A customers.

Following the strike action, the federal government and organised labour reached an agreement on a new minimum wage that will be “above N60,000.”

The figure was disclosed by the government late Monday after a meeting with the Nigeria Labour Congress (NLC) and its counterpart, the Trade Union Congress (TUC), at the Office of the Secretary to the Government of the Federation (OSGF).

Speaking during an appearance on Arise TV on Tuesday, Benson Upah, Head of Department of Information NLC, disclosed that Organised Labour is not fixated on a figure but would consider a fair and reasonable figure that can take a family of six home.

His words: “We are not fixated on any figure; our first offer was N615,000, but we climbed down, and we’re now on N494,000. Let me be emphatic; our fixation is with value. If today the government takes the needed decisions to create value around the naira, we’ll be ready to take a figure that is realistic.

“In 1981, the national minimum wage was N125, equivalent to $188. If the government takes the requisite decision to create value around the naira, we’ll be ready to take a figure that is fair and square.”

Speaking further, he stated that President Bola Tinubu, since assuming office, has made decisions that have affected the country’s economy.

“The first is the ill-advised removal of fuel subsidy rather than dealing with the criminal content of the subsidy. The president admitted to the presence and existence of a cabal, and rather than deal with that, he instead chose to deal with Nigerians,” he said.

“The second one is the mindless devaluation of the naira, which took it from N350 to N1900 and it’s now hovering around N1600; the third is the tariff hike; and the fourth is the 26.5 per cent interest rate. When you look at this, it becomes highly toxic for business.”

The NLC spokesperson responded to comments made by Bayo Onanuga, Special Adviser to President Bola Tinubu on Information and Strategy, stating that the union has no political sentiment.

He said, “As we speak now, we’re the only reliable voice that can speak to power at the risk of our lives. We’ve been consistent from pre-independence to the military and democratic eras. This is not the first time we’ve taken on a government. Right from 1999, the presidency of Obasanjo; then Yar’adua; and Jonathan, but Onanuga didn’t see political sentiment.

“I want to assure you that we’ve no political sentiment. Our sentiments in this matter are pure, patriotic, and in the interest of this country,” he added.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *