The Nigerian Labour Movement has called on the Federal Government to accelerate the inauguration of the Tripartite Committee for the implementation of the new National Minimum Wage for workers in the country.
The President, Nigeria Labour Congress (NLC), Ayuba Wabba, and his counterpart, Trade Union Congress (TUC), Bobboi Kagama, made the call while reacting to the fallout of the May Day celebration on Monday in Abuja.
Nigerian workers had expressed anger and disappointment on the non-implementation of the minimum wage thereby disrupting the 2017 May Day celebration.
Wabba said that the constitution of the tripartite committee was imperative as the economy was not friendly to workers.
According to him, workers have today expressed their sadness, challenges, as many of them have not earn their salaries, so it is a demonstration of anger on the situation in the country.
“The challenges workers are passing through are enormous, workers have expected that either the President or the Vice president would have been present to respond to workers yearning and anticipation.
“Workers attitude today have shown that it is an accumulation of anger, and that the economic situation is biting very hard on them as many of them cannot pay their bills.
“They also expected that the minimum wage will receive accelerated attention and that the pronouncement will be made here but the case is otherwise, ”he said.
The NLC president said that government must come to the aid of workers as workers, pensioners, were not able to meet their financial commitments.
He called on the all levels of government to play their part in ensuring that the needful was done.
“The Government and the National Assembly have a responsibility, until they work together, we cannot be able to have the challenges addressed.
“Like the budget should be passed if the promotion arrears, among others therein, and if they are delayed, it means all the tiers of government need to play their roles effectively for the issues to be resolved.
“The truth is that Nigerians are being pushed to the wall, workers also are being pushed to the wall and that is what they have been able to demonstrate here today, ” he said.
Also, the TUC President, Kaigama said the leadership of NLC and TUC sympathised with workers over the current hardship being faced by workers.
“It is an expression of the suffering that the Nigerian workers have been going through particularly the federal workers.
“You are aware workers have not been paid their promotion arrears since 2007 some of those promoted are still collecting their old salaries.
“We are within recession, within the pains of the devaluation of the naira, and the inflationary trend, so, the expression today by workers is the expression of pain and disappointment and anger,” he said.
He called on the Federal Government to urgently address the situation by ensuring that the needful was done.
Kaigama noted that the Nigerian Labour Movement has spoken with the Federal Government and that submission on the demand for the National Minimum Wage has been made but that government continued to delay it.
“We called on the Federal Government to practically address this issue by putting in place the tripartite committee for the implementation of the National Minimum Wage,” he added.