The Federal Government has been cautioned against foot dragging on the new minimum wage in order to avoid an industrial crisis.
Labour leaders in Nigeria led by the President of the Nigerian Labour Congress, NLC, Ayuba Wabba, at a press conference in Lagos said the Minimum Wage committee gave the Nigerian government 14 days to ensure the tripartite committee conclude its job or be ready to face an industrial action.
Wabba said the Committee was not happy in anyway with the comments allegedly credited to the Minister of Labour and Employment, Chris Ngige.
The Minister had recently reportedly said the committee should adjourn to enable him consult further with the government.
The News Agency of Nigeria, NAN quoted the NLC President to have said ”We view his supposed pronouncement with great concern, suspicion and outrage”, NAN quoted him as saying.
“This new antic certainly is not acceptable to Nigerian workers, who had expected a New National Minimum Wage since 2016″.
The Labour Leader said that in the course of the meeting, the committee members had time to consult and received memoranda and inputs from 21 state governments, specialized Agencies of the Federal Government, the Organized Private Sector, Organised Labour and the general public.
Mr Joe Ajaero, President of the United Labour Congress, (ULC) explained that issues concerning the minimum wage has been concluded and that the committee was expecting government representative to pronounce their own figure.
Ajaero, however, did not give a likely figure that could be approved as minimum wage and also did not give a clear answer on whether government was sincere on paying the new wage.
He said that the call for a new minimum wage became necessary because it was already overdue, and in view of the increasing cost of goods and services.
The news conference was attended by top labour leaders from NLC, TUC and ULC