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Resign if you can’t pay N18,000 minimum wage, NLC tells governors

By News Express on 19/12/2015

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The Nigeria Labour Congress (NLC) has asked any of the nation’s 36 state governors who is unable to pay the N18,000 minimum wage to resign immediately.

Speaking with journalists in Ilorin, Kwara State, when he paid a condolence visit to the family of a labour leader, Comrade Issa Aremu, who recently lost his wife, the president of the NLC, Comrade Ayuba Wabba, insisted that the N18,000 minimum wage for Nigerian workers was not fixed but was negotiated through a tripartite arrangement.

Wabba, who said that any governor that reneged on the agreement would be breaking the law of the land, added that such a governor should resign from his position.

The labour leader, who commended the war against corruption by President Muhammadu Buhari, said corruption had killed more people in the country than road accidents.

“They have been misinforming the people about the N18,000 minimum wage. Minimum wage was not fixed; it was negotiated through a tripartite system. Nineteen state governors represented the governors. The Federal Government and the organised private sector were also represented. It was a tripartite process of collective bargaining.

“We had looked at all the indices of ability to pay. It is a law and anybody that refuses to pay is breaking the law of Nigeria and we advise any such governor to resign.

“Why is it that the salary of councillors and the high political office holders all over the country, despite their inability to pay, is the same? If there is an economic challenge, why should it be the workers that will bear the burden? Councillors in the least economically viable to the most economically viable states in the country earn the same salaries. So, who are they fooling?

“Can they continue to fool us? When the resources were there, workers were not enjoying. Now that there is a challenge in the system, why should the burden be shifted to the workers? That is not acceptable to us. This is like a battle for us as we must continue to insist that workers should work in dignity and there must be dignity in labour,” he said.

On the war against corruption, Wabba said: “The ongoing probe is not unexpected. Since the inception of the current democracy, people have assisted themselves with our commonwealth. I am sure if we are able to recover these resources from local, state to federal governments, we will have more than enough to fix our system and everybody will enjoy.

“Now, they don’t steal in millions; we hear of billions these days. They would buy houses they cannot use. They would buy houses in Nigeria, Dubai and the United Kingdom. How many houses will a person sleep in on a particular night? Therefore, it is vanity for politicians to continue to loot even what they cannot use.

“For me, the anti-corruption war must be consistent. It must also go down the ladder, including the organised private sector. All of us must be interrogated. Corruption has killed many people even more than road accidents. The roads are not fixed because the resources meant to fix the roads have been frittered away. Why are hospitals not functioning optimally and people are dying? It is because the resources are supposed to be used to fix the hospitals have been misappropriated. That is why we are canvassing for capital punishment. It has worked elsewhere.   

“The apparent slowness in the current administration is because what is required to fight corruption must be put in place. I also know that when you fight corruption, the people involved will fight back. And the process will also slow the person fighting it down. But the president should continue to be consistent. He should not be deterred because it is only a clean leader that can fight corruption. We urge the president to be consistent in his war against corruption because that is why Nigerians voted for him; for a positive change.” (Saturday Tribune)

•Photo shows NLC President, Comrade Ayuba Wabba.

Source News Express

Posted 19/12/2015 1:53:26 PM


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