The Minister of Labour and Employment, Sen. Chris Ngige, said that total upward review of government workers is being considered by the Federal government as part of its efforts to cushion the effect of hardship faced in the country.
He hinted this when he delivered a speech at the public presentation of a compendium of Nigeria Labour Congress (NLC) at 40 publication titled, “Contemporary History of Working Class Struggles,” in Abuja on Monday.
The labour minister said the adjustment is imperative following the current economic hardship experienced world over and in Nigeria particularly. Ngige said: “The inflation is worldwide, we shall adjust the minimum wage in conformity with what is happening and much more important, the 2019 Minimum Wage Act has a new clause for a review.
That adjustment has started with the Academic Staff Union of Universities (ASUU) because the stage they are at with their primary employers, the ministry of education, is a Collective Bargaining Agreement (CBA), negotiations.”
The minister added: “Under the principles of offer and acceptance, which is that of Collective Bargaining, ASUU can say let’s look at the offer they gave us and make a counter offer, but they have not done that, if they do that, we are bound to look at their offer, these are the ingredients of collective negotiations.” Ngige further noted that labour created the wealth of any nation as well as the wealth of any family, adding that “if you don’t work, you won’t eat.”
Earlier in his address, the President of the Trade Union Congress (TUC), Festus Osifo noted that Nigerian workers have been subjugated and oprre§§ed by the ruling class. He lamented that the current minimum wage of N30,000 couldn’t in the present economic reality pay workers transportation fare to work for a month.
“The value of the N30, 000 minimum wage has been eroded. It cannot take workers to work again,” he said.