Emerging reports have claimed that the minister of labour and productivity, Chris Ngige, declared the federal government has rejected the N22,500 minimum wage proposal by the Nigeria Governors Forum (NGF).
Ngige who made this known on Wednesday, October 31, during a phone interview on Channels Television’s Sunrise Daily said criticised the governors for the figure saying N22,500 is even below the N24, 000 agreement by the federal government.
According to him, “The governors have not even done enough. I told them that this N22,500 is even rejected by the federal government.
“The national minimum wage is a national legislation being driven by the federal government of Nigeria in pursuance to item 34 of the Exclusive Legislative list. But you don’t go and make a law which people will disobey at the initial.
“If you make a law and hoax a figure that is not agreeable, which people don’t have the capacity or ability to pay because the International Labour Organisation (ILO) says in those negotiations, the principle is the ability to pay.”
The minister, however, decried that the Chairman of the Tripartite Committee,. Amal Pepple is not in the country.
Ngige explained that despite her absence for two weeks for a medical check-up, the Federal Government would convene partners involved in the minimum wage to deliberate on the issue and arrive on the same page.
Although workers are demanding N30,000 as minimum wage, the minister said that any industrial action being embarked on the aggrieved workers would not resolve the issues at stake.
Chairman of the Forum and Zamfara state governor, Abdul’Aziz Yari, said that the decision of the governors was based on the current realities on the ground.
He, however, said that all parties on the ground would resume back on negotiations to see that the welfare of the workers is met.
Meanwhile, Legit had reported that Nigeria Labour Congress, Trade Union Congress of Nigeria, and United Labour Congress of Nigeria, workers and their civil society allies staged a protest in major streets across the country including Lagos state to demand a new minimum wage at N30,000.
The workers on Tuesday, October 30, threatened that “no N30,000 new minimum wage, no votes” in 2019 general elections.
The bodies said a day of national mourning and sensitisation of workers and Nigerians ahead of the November 6, start date of a nationwide strike.