By Temitope Owotoki
Labour unions under the aegis of the Trade Union Side (TUS) of the Joint National Public Service Negotiating Council (JNPSNC) have threatened to embark on a nationwide strike over the delayed implementation of N30,000 new minimum monthly wage by the government.
The Council, in a statement jointly signed by Anchaver Solomon, Acting Chairman of the JNPSNC, and Alade Lawal, the Council’s Secretary, expressed concern over “strange proposals” by the government, which it described as attempts to derail efforts of implementing the new minimum wage which has been signed into law.
It said workers across the country will not hesitate to take trade union actions if the government fails to implement the new minimum wage as soon as possible.
“Operating under the aegis of the Trade Union Side of the Joint National Public Service Negotiating Council, the eight unions in the public service of the federation and 36 states have alerted Nigerians that labour may have to embark on industrial action if the current state of affairs as regards the issue of consequential adjustment arising from the new national minimum wage of N30,000.00 per month remains the same,” the statement read.
“Since the committee set up early this month by the government to work out the consequential adjustments arising from the new national minimum wage of N30,000.00 started to meet, government has been coming up with one strange proposal or the other, all with the intent of scuttling the implementation of the new national minimum wage signed into law by President Muhammadu Buhari on Thursday, April 18, 2019.
“As things are right now, the government’s side is only prepared to pay peanuts to workers as adjustment under the pretext that it will soon be undertaking general salary review in the public service.
“Labour leaders had initially proposed that since the minimum wage was increased by 66.66 per cent, i.e. from N18,000.000 to N30,000.00, salaries for officers on grade levels 01-17 should be adjusted accordingly to maintain the relativity that exists in the salary structure in the public service.
“This is why the eight trade unions in the public service have resolved that enough is enough and that if the FG fails to caution its officials and direct them to negotiate openly, millions of workers at the federal and 36 states will have no other alternative but to take some necessary trade union actions to seek redress.”