Ayunba Wabba, The President of the Nigeria Labour Congress (NLC) has maintained that the N18, 000 minimum wage for Nigerian workers was negotiated through what it called ‘a tripartite system.’ The NLC warned that any governor that is breaking the law of the land to stop, saying that such governor should resign from his position.
Mr. Ayunba Wabba, gave this warning while speaking with reporters Friday in Ilorin, shortly after his condolence visit to NLC vice president, Issa Aremu over the death of his wife.
In his words; “They have been misinforming the people about the N18, 000 minimum wage. Minimum wage is not fixed, it was negotiated through a tripartite system; ten state governors represented the governors, federal government and organized 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 councilors to the highest political office all over the country despite their inability to pay is the same? If there is economic challenge why should it be the workers that will bear the burden? Councilors in least economic viable to the most economic 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 only 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.”
Speaking on the war against corruption, Comrade Wabba said: “The ongoing probe is not unexpected. Since the inception of 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 will buy houses they cannot use. They will buy houses in Nigeria, Dubai and United Kingdom. How many houses will a person sleep in at a particular night? Therefore, it is vanity for politicians to continue to loot even what they cannot use”.
Mr. Ayunba Wabba is the former president of medical and health workers union, and immediate past treasurer of the Nigeria Labour congress.
Omolara Adegoke- Abuja
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