Onyebuchi Ezigbo in Abuja
The President of the Nigeria Labour Congress (NLC), Ayuba Wabba, has reacted to a proposal by President Muhammadu Buhari to set up a technical committee to review the agreed N30,000 minimum wage, saying organised labour will not be a party to such an exercise.
Buhari had revealed the plan to constitute the proposed technical review committee while making the 2019 budget presentation at the National Assembly in Abuja
However, Wabba who spoke shortly after the budget presentation, insisted that as far as the labour movement was concerned, the issue of new minimum wage figure was settled by the tripartite committee, which concluded negotiations on the matter and submitted its report to the president.
“We cannot accept the use of any technical committee to look into the already agreed N30,000 minimum wage.
“The president promised to pass the report to lawmakers a week after it was presented to him. “Once the tripartite committee has met and agreed on an amount, no other committee can meet on the same issue,’’ Wabba said.
The NLC president said the organised labour is scheduled to meet next week to take a final decision on the issue.
On his part, the President of the United Labour Congress (ULC), Joe Ajaero, also kicked against the proposed technical committee.
He said the tripartite committee had considered the ability of the state governments to pay the N30,000 before agreeing on it.
“We (labour) have resolved to fight for the new minimum wage even after the upcoming general elections. There would be no retreat or surrender until workers receive the wage,” he said.