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Less than 24 hours after the leadership of the Nigerian Governors’ Forum (NGF) announced after an emergency meeting in Abuja that governors have agreed to pay N22,500 as new minimum wage, the Federal Government has dissociated itself from the figure, saying it was not in support of the figure as minimum wage.
Reacting to the development in a national TV programme on Wednesday, the Minister of Labour and Productivity, Dr Chris Ngige, said, “The governors have not even done enough. I told them that this N22,500 was even rejected by the Federal Government”.
However, the minister maintained silence on chances of the federal government shifting further on its position of N24,000 even though the prevailing tripartite committee had reached a deal and written its conclusive report on the adopted position of N30,000
While stressing that “The national minimum wage is a national legislation being driven by the Federal Government of Nigeria in pursuance to item 34 of the Exclusive Legislative list,” it would be recalled that the President of Nigerian Labour Congress (NLC), Ayuba Wabba had on Tuesday, swiftly reacted to the NGF’s figure, saying the existence of the forum is first of all, alien to the Labour Movement in Nigeria and the substantive tripartite Committee set up by the presidency to work out new minimum wage document which it will forward to the national assembly for a legislative process that will lead to a law for nationwide implementation.
Business Hilights recalls that currently, three figures are still on the table; including N22,500 by NGF, N24,000 by federal government and N30,000 by the tripartite committee which the federal government remains a substantive member, but failed to take part in the vote that produced the Committee’s figure N30,000.
Analysts are still worried that the lingering inability of all the parties (federal government in particular) to concur to N30,000 may force organized labour to put paid to its threat of full blown nationwide industrial action effective next week Tuesday, November 6.
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