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Minimum Wage: Labour insists on May 31 ultimatum

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The Organised Labour has reiterated its May 31 ultimatum for the Federal Government to finalise the new national minimum wage fixing process for workers.

The position was contained in a communique issued at the end of a joint emergency National Executive Council (NEC) meeting of the Nigeria Labour Congress (NLC) and the Trade Union Congress (TUC) in Abuja.

In the communique jointly signed by Mr Joe Ajaero, NLC President and Mr Festus Osifo, President of TUC, the organised labour said its NEC had thoroughly deliberated on the issue and considered the current realities as they affect Nigerian workers and masses.

Labour noted that NEC appreciated the efforts made thus far but emphasised the urgency of reaching a fair and equitable agreement.

“We need an agreement that will genuinely reflect the true value of Nigerian workers’ contributions to the nation’s development and the current crisis of survival facing Nigerians as a result of government’s policies.

“The NEC affirms its commitment to ensuring that the interests and welfare of workers are adequately protected in the negotiation process.

“The NEC-in-session therefore reiterates the ultimatum issued by the NLC and TUC to the federal government, which expires on the last day of this month,” the communiqué read.

Also in the communiqué, the organised labour directed all state councils whose state governments were yet to fully implement the N30,000 national minimum wage and its consequential adjustments to immediately issue a joint two-week ultimatum to the culpable state governments to avert industrial action.

It also reaffirmed its demands for an immediate reversal of the tariff hike and the “vexatious apartheid categorisation into bands to alleviate the suffering of Nigerian workers and citizens”.

Labour also gave the National Electricity Regulatory Commission (NERC) and the federal government a May 31 ultimatum to meet the demands.

“In the event that the government fails to meet the demands outlined within the stipulated timeframe, the NEC authorises the leadership of the NLC and TUC to take appropriate actions.

“This includes, but is not limited to the mobilisation of workers for peaceful protests and industrial actions to press home these demands for social justice and workers’ rights,” the communiqué read in part.

The organised labour emphasised the non-negotiable nature of the demands and urged the government to prioritise the resolution of the issues in the best interest of industrial peace.

It called on all affiliate unions, and workers including Civil Society Organisations across Nigeria to remain united and steadfast in solidarity during the critical period. (NAN)

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