NLC explains complexity in minimum wage talks

President of the Nigeria Labour Congress, NLC, Comrade Joe Ajaero has blamed ‘wage suppression’ since the past five years as the reason for the complexity in ongoing talks amongst federal, States and workers.

He disclosed this on Politics Today (Tuesday) on Channels Television Magazine programme, hours after the leaders of the Organized labour rejected the proposed N54,000 new minimum wage on Tuesday.

Ajaero said the tripartite meeting with would be reconvened on Wednesday when Stakeholders, including Governors are expected to give a breakdown of the new wage proposal.

The NLC President said, “when you suppress wage for a very long time, these are the kinds of things you see. When you look at the economy of Ghana, wage is reviewed annually. If you do that, you will take care of so many other factors to check inflation”.

He said, “But, in Nigeria where you suppress wage for five years, and you expect us – workers to be talking about N30,000, N31,000, N32,000 monthly. It doesn’t work. We are looking at the frequency of wage review so that we will know where we are going to.

“N615,000 minimum wage as a Country that exports crude oil is $20-$22 monthly”, according to Ajaero who
described the N48,000 proposed by the government as ridiculous.

Speaking further, the NLC President said, “the N48,000 is not substantial. There are various ways of expressing displeasure. The last time, we told him (President Bola Tinubu) that there was no case submission. And in this month again, we told him there is nothing on the table.

The State Governors were mission in action in Tuesday’s meeting. Some of them had representatives at the meeting. They (representatives) were without a mandate”, Ajaero said.

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