NLC urges President Buhari to assent to new minimum wage bill

Tunde Akanbi, Ilorin


President Muhammadu Buhari has been urged to without further delay assent to the thirty thousand Naira minimum wage bill for Nigerian workers as endorsed by the National Assembly.

The Kwara State chairman of the Nigerian labour Congress (NLC) Comrade Yekeen Kareem Agunbiade made the call in his office in Ilorin while answering questions from VON.

Comrade Agunbiade though, described the thirty thousand Naira minimum wage as long overdue but still appreciated President Buhari and the entire members of the National Assembly stressing that both the executive and the legislative arms have demonstrated that they are labour friendly.

The labour leader also praised the Senate for its recommendation for an immediate review of the present revenue sharing formula among the federal, state and local governments.

According to him, it would guarantee effective implementation of the new minimum wage at the state and local government levels.

Comrade Agunbiade said with the approval from both the Senate and the House of Representatives, there is no more negotiations with their workers at the state and local governments or even the private sectors as to whether or not the new minimum wage would be paid as the period of negotiation is now over while the new minimum wage across board.

Speaking on the new minimum wage as it affects workers in Kwara state, the NLC chairman disclosed that even before the approval by the Senate,  the state governor, Alhaji Abdulfatah Ahmed had earlier set up a committee which he is a member and which the government had promised to implement if approved by the Federal Government.

On the issue of amputated eighteen thousand Naira minimum wage being paid by the state government to a larger percentage of workforce in the state, Comrade Agunbiade assured that it would be normalized soon before the full implementation of the new minimum wage as the committee on the new minimum wage would be meeting tomorrow.

According to him, the committee had agreed that the state government would use the federal government circular to work out the authentic eighteen thousand Naira minimum wage to pay its workers and assured state civil servants of the implementation of this development while that of the new minimum wage would also be based on the federal government circular.

Comrade Agunbiade has therefore assured all civil servants in the state that they would be captured in the new thirty thousand Naira minimum wage and expressed the hope that between the end of April and first week of May, this year, workers in the state would jubilate along side with their counterparts across the country.

The NLC chairman also quoted Governor Abdulfatah Ahmed as saying that his administration would pay the thirty thousand minimum wage before the expiration of his tenure if signed into law by President Muhammadu Buhari.

Comrade Agunbiade however, cautioned that workers would not collect any new minimum wage that falls contrary to that of the Federal Government circular.