…FG to spend N315 b on salary increase
Stephen Ukandu, Umuahia
After its late night meeting with the Federal Government, the Organised Labour has agreed to suspend its proposed nationwide strike for 30 days.
This is sequel to the signing of a Memorandum of Understanding, MoU, with the Federal Government after both parties reached a truce.
Findings by Ikengaonline revealed that the meeting between the Federal Government and Labour at the Chief of Staff’s Conference Room of the Presidential Villa, Abuja, lasted for over five hours.
The Federal Government is to spend over N315 billion on the new wage hike to mitigate the economic hardship on workers following the fuel subsidy removal.
Briefing State House Correspondents after the meeting, Minister of Labour and Employment, Simon Lalong, said that the Organised Labour had accepted to back down on the planned strike for 30 days.
“The NLC and TUC have accepted to suspend for 30 days, the planned Indefinite Nationwide strike scheduled to begin, Tuesday, the 3rd of October, 2023,” Lalong said.
He further said that the MoU shall be filed with the relevant court of competent jurisdiction within one week as consent judgment by the Federal Government.
The Minister said that the Federal Government was making efforts to address all the concerns raised by Labour.
Adding his voice, the National President of the Nigeria Labour Congress, NLC, Comrade Joe Ajaero, said the unions would revisit the agreement if the FG failed to fulfill their demands.
According to the agreement, the Federal Government grants a wage award of N35,000 only to all Federal Government workers “beginning from the month of September pending when a new national minimum wage is expected to have been signed into law.”
“A minimum wage committee shall be inaugurated within one month from the date of this agreement,” the MoU added.
It further read: “Federal Government accepts to vote N100 billion for the provision of high capacity CNG buses for mass transit in Nigeria.
“Provisions are also being made for initial 55,000 CNG conversion kits to kick start an auto gas conversion programme, whilst work is ongoing on state-of-the-art CNG stations nationwide. The rollout aims to commence by November with pilots across 10 campuses nationwide.
“The Federal Government should urge State Government through the National Economic Council and Governors Forum to implement wage award for their workers.
“Similar consideration should also be given to Local Government and private sector workers. A joint visitation will be made to the refineries to ascertain their rehabilitation status.”
The Federal Government had on Sunday said that the provisional wage increase announced by President Bola Tinubu for all low-income workers for six months would cut across all treasury-paid workers.
The Chief of Staff to the President, Femi Gbajabiamila, who stated this during the press briefing, said the measure was reached to avert the proposed indefinite nationwide strike declared by the organised labour.