Fresh strike looms over implementation of new minimum wage

Trade Union Congress (TUC). Photo: NigeriaBusinessDirectory

Organised labour has alleged that the Federal Government is courting another industrial crisis over delay in the implementation of N30, 000 minimum wage.

To avert another fresh strike, the Joint National Public Service Negotiating Council (JNPSNC) has urged Nigerians to appeal to the Federal Government to implement the new minimum wage with adequate consequential adjustments to avoid the looming industrial action.

The labour movement under the auspices of Trade Union Side (TUS) of the council stated this yesterday following failure to reach an agreement with the government over non-implementation of the new pay.

Acting Chairman of TUS, Anchaver Simon and Secretary, Alade Lawal, said efforts by the unions to persuade government to implement the new minimum wage with appropriate consequential adjustment had so far failed.

They said the TUS had given the Federal Government enough time to come to terms with workers’ demands, but it appeared strike was the only language government understands.

The trade group said the union would give no further notice to government before public servants in the state commence strike over non-implementation of the new minimum wage and appropriate consequential adjustment.

“It has become imperative to alert the general public that all efforts by the Trade Unions to persuade the government to implement the new N30, 000 monthly national minimum wage signed into Law by President Muhammadu Buhari on April 18, 2019, had been frustrated,” he said.

The group added that the consequential adjustment committee had on September 3, 2019 agreed that the TUS proposal be forwarded to the President to see the position of labour and approve appropriate consequential adjustment accordingly.

When the meeting reconvened on September 16, 2019 to get feedback on anticipated approval from the President, government officials brought a fresh proposal of 11 per cent pay rise for officers on Grade Levels 07 to 14, instead of the earlier 10 per cent and 6.5 per cent for grades levels 15 to 17 instead of the former 5.5 per cent.

“Presently, Nigeria is rated the poorest country in the world and yet government has refused to implement a minimum wage for workers to lift millions of citizens out of poverty,” the group said.

Meanwhile, the TUS stated that the Trade Union Congress (TUC) and the Nigeria Labour Congress (NLC) had been briefed on the breakdown of negotiations in respect of consequential adjustment arising from the new N30, 000 minimum wage.

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