***The Nigerian labour denied being in charge of the postponement in the execution of the N30,000 minimum wage
***Labour rather accused the government of being unserious with its guarantees
***The organised labour approached the government to take workers’ predicament seriously
By Jennifer Y Omiloli
The organised labour has blamed the federal government for being unserious about the execution of the minimum wage saying they were not in charge of the postponement.
Boss Richard Egbule who is the director of National Salaries, Income and Wages Commission had blamed labour for being in charge of the postponement by dismissing the idea of the federal government.
The leader of the Nigeria Labour Congress, Comrade Ayuba Wabba said that the NLC and the TUC were never again associated with the subtleties of arrangement on the Consequential Adjustment.
He however said that the Joint Public Service Negotiation Council will have the subtleties.
“For now, we are not part of that discussion and we will not be able to have the details.”
Confidant Alade Lawal who is the secretary of the Joint Public Service Negotiation Council said it wasn’t right to reprimand labour for the deferral in the implementation of minimum wage.
He said: “He is being economical with the truth, he is the secretary of the committee negotiating Consequential Adjustment and by the name of that committee, the mandate of that committee is to negotiate the right consequential adjustment arising from the minimum wage. For someone to rise up and say Labour is rejecting what government wants to offer is not correct.
“You can’t award when you are negotiating. Two parties are there, they will look for what is appropriate. The point is they want to give peanuts to workers and Labour is saying no. That since 2011 when that one hundred naira was added to public servants not a single dine has happened to wages and you know fully well that the purchasing power of workers salary particularly those in the public sector is nothing to write home about because we have had series of devaluation.
“Then it was N160 to a dollar and now it is N360 to a dollar. We had this Petroleum price increase which was from N87 per litre to N145 per litre and there are a lot of challenges that have happened to the Nigeria economy. ” You know fully well that when they increased the fuel price, they promised heaven on earth to dissuade labour from protesting, that they were going to adjust the minimum wage, they were going to do palliative and a Committee was set up with labour participating to come out with palliative measures to ameliorate the effects of the price increase.
“You know fully well that not a single thing was done for Nigeria workers, all the promises failed. What they wanted to do was to give N5, 000 to each employer. We say why do you that because between 2011 and 2019 you want to give N5,000, we should negotiate and agree on what is meaningful and what is realistic and we have been on that. We met before the holidays and we are supposed to meet again on Wednesday and Thursday, that is the Technical Committee.
“So, for him to now come over and say that it is the labour that is delaying the implementation of the minimum wage, I think it is high time government turned its searchlight on that office.”