Victor Ogunje in Ado-Ekiti
Organised labour Thursday warned that no state chapter of the labour movement would accept any renegotiation for downward review of the already signed minimum wage law of N30,000 from any state governor.
The National President of Nigeria Labour Congress (NLC), Mr Ayuba Wabba, made the declaration in Ado Ekiti, the Ekiti State capital, while presiding over the election of new leadership of NLC in the state.
He stated that the Nigerian workers were under strict instructions not to accept any minimum wage less than N30,000 from the governors.
Wabba said the new minimum wage had become binding, having been approved by the two chambers of the National Assembly and signed into law by President Muhammadu Buhari.
He said that the excuses by some governors that they could not pay the new wage was an afterthought and therefore untenable.
At the state NLC delegates conference, where the former Chairman of the Senior Staff Association of Nigeria Universities, Ekiti State University Branch, Mr. Olatunde Kolapo, was elected as the new state chairman, Wabba insisted that the new wage would not be compromised under any guise.
Kolapo emerged unopposed among other executive members that were elected.
Wabba, whose address was delivered by an Ex-officio member of the Congress, Maureen Onyia-Ekwuazi, said the Congress would not take anything short of N30,000 as minimum wage from state governors since it had become “a law binding on everybody”.
“Once the minimum wage bill has been signed by President Buhari it has become a law and we won’t allow any governor to circumvent the law.
“What we asked for was a living wage and we cannot allow anybody to shortchange our members,” he said.
Wabba urged the new labour leaders in the state to be resolute and committed in the struggle for improved welfare of their members, saying that should be done without compromise.
Performing the opening ceremony, Governor Kayode Fayemi, who was represented by the Chief of Staff, Mr Biodun Omoleye, promised the readiness of state government to pay the N30,000 minimum wage.
The governor said the newly-elected leadership of the trade unions in the state would be invited soon for a meeting on the modalties for the payment.