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Labour chief lauds Buhari for giving lifeline to states

By News Express on 09/07/2015

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The Chairman of Industrial Global Union, Mr Isa Aremu, on Wednesday commended President Muhammadu Buhari for approving an intervention fund for states to pay arrears of salaries owed workers.

Aremu gave the commendation when he spoke at the inauguration of the Nigeria Council of the union in Lagos.

The News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) recalls that Buhari on July 6, approved the release of N713.7billion intervention fund for states.

The bailout is part of a three-pronged relief package that will end workers’ plight.

While N413.7billion represents special intervention fund, the balance of about N250 billion is a soft loan to states.

Aremu told the governors to ensure that they used the money judiciously since this was the first time the Federal Government was making such intervention fund.

“The governors should prudently use the fund. It is unacceptable that governors live on bailout, yet fly around with chartered aircraft,” he said.

The union leader said it was no longer necessary to call for the creation of more states since existing ones were not viable.

He said that governors should re-industrialise their states to be able to create jobs and make more revenue.

According to him, the present minimum wage paid to workers has dropped in value by 31.8 per cent due to devaluation of the naira.

He urged the National Assembly and the Federal Government to review the minimum wage so as to improve the condition of workers.

Also spoke on the current insecurity in some African countries, especially Nigeria, urging the National Assembly to work to eliminate the activities of terrorists.

On the global union, he said that the objective of the body was to build stronger unions, organise and increase union membership.

``Our objective is to fight for trade union rights, industrial policy, promote social justice and create safe work places.’’

He said that the body was established on June 19, 2012 in Denmark and that the founding federations were the International Metal

Workers Federations, the International Federation of Chemical,  Energy, Mines and General Workers Union and the International Textile Union.

Mr Fabian Ukomo, an official of the union from South Africa, advised the Nigerian members to be united to have the power to enforce policies.

``You must get together, plan activities that will increase membership so as to be a democratic trade union,’’ Ukomo said. (NAN)

•Photo shows Isa Aremu.

Source News Express

Posted 09/07/2015 05:30:14 AM


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