Minimum Wage: Buhari and Osinbajo should be Ready For War – Labour

The Organised Labour, comprising the Trade Union Congress (TUC) and the Nigeria Labour Congress (NLC) declared on Saturday that they are going to war with the Federal Government over the continued delay in the implementation of the new national minimum wage; and the recent threat by the Minister of Labour and Employment, Sen. Chris Ngige, that the government would have to retrench workers to implement Labour demand on the N30,000, consequential adjustments for Grade Level 7 to 17.

 The Secretary General Said, “As far as we are concern, the statement being credited to the Labour Minister is an hear-say. If it is the official statement of the government, let him present it in our meeting, then we will give them our response. So, to us, Ngige is just talking as a person. When he wants to present that position as a minister, let him present it before the committee that we are going to meet, and if they like, they should not do anything before the date given.

“Somebody says he is going to war, he didn’t say I am thinking of going to war. He said he is going to war on the so, so date and you are asking if he has armoury or ammunitions. Let the day of the war come, whether we are mobilizing or not, they would see.

“There is nothing to talk about, we are not prepared to trade in words with anybody. We have expressed our position even to the President and to the Vice President. Fortunately, the minister was also there. If they think we are playing, well the days have not expired, let’s see when the days expired, and what shall become of them. But I know they will not leave it to pass-bye because they know what we can do.”

Also Read: Government May Sack Workers to Pay N30,000 Minimum Wage – Chris Ngige

On the threat of sack of workers by the government to enable it implement labour demands, he described such as a mere hear-say and a personal opinion of the minister which doesn’t represent the official government position.

The Secretary-General said: “As far as we are concern, the statement being credited to the Labour Minister is an hear-say. If it is the official statement of the government, let him present it in our meeting, then we will give them our response. So, to us, Ngige is just talking as a person.

When he wants to present that position as a minister, let him present it before the committee that we are going to meet, and if they like, they should not do anything before the date given.

“We are not even ready to respond to them. Let them present that position on the floor of the house of the meeting, then, we will also give them our response. All these fake threats are nonsense, it is a gimmick.”

The NLC President, Comd. Wabba also said the minister was expressing his own personal position, and challenged him to come with empirical data, facts and figures to confront the workers.

Comd. Wabba said: “That is his position, that is why I made reference to empirical data. Empirical data means that you have a historical background. In fact, let me make the point that we have had a minimum wage from 1981 to date. Let us interrogate the data and speak from the point of information, not from the point of sentiment and lack of clear information and that is the position of Labour.

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