On Monday, the Federal Government announced intentions to raise the N30,000 minimum salary in response to global inflation by 2024.
Dr Chris Ngige, Minister of Labour and Employment, made the announcement during the Nigeria Labour Congress (NLC) public presentation titled “Contemporary history of working-class struggle” in Abuja.
According to him, the change was necessary to represent what was going on in the world.
He said, “The inflation is worldwide, we shall adjust the minimum wage in conformity with what is happening now. The 2019 Minimum Wage Act has a new clause for review. The adjustment has started with the Academic Staff Union of the University because the stage they are with their primary employers, the Ministry of Education is a collective bargaining agreement negotiations.
“Under the principles of offer and acceptance, which is that of collective bargaining, ASUU can look at the offer they gave us and make a counteroffer, 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.”
He stated, “If you don’t work, you won’t eat,” adding that labour provided the riches of any nation as well as the prosperity of every family.
He did, however, encourage the executives of the Nigeria Labour Congress’s affiliate unions to get acquainted with labor legislation.
He also stated that plans were being made to turn the Michael Imoudu Institute of Labour Studies in Ilorin, Kwara State, into a degree-awarding institution.
He stated that given the current economic condition, the existing minimum salary of N30,000 would not cover workers’ transportation costs to work for a month.
Festus Osifo, President of the Trade Union Congress, also spoke, stating that the main goal of the country’s labor movement was to safeguard workers’ interests. The tale might have been different if not for the battle of the country’s founding fathers.