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FG pleads with Labour to reconsider strike action over minimum wage

THE Federal Government has pleaded with the organised labour in Nigeria to reconsider its decision to embark on a nationwide strike slated to commence on Monday, June 3.

The plea is coming shortly after organised labour declared an indefinite strike over the failure of the federal government’s failure to meet its demand for a new minimum wage.

The ICIR reported that the president of the Trade Union Congress (TUC), Festus Osifo, announced the strike during a joint news conference with the Nigeria Labour Congress (NLC) leadership in Abuja on Friday, May 31.

In an interview with PUNCH newspaper, the Minister of Information and National Orientation, Idris Mohammed, who spoke on behalf of the federal government pleaded with Labour to join hands with FG to find a solution, adding that the government had made an offer of N60,000.

“The government is pleading with Labour to reconsider its position. The FG has already made an offer of N60,000, and whatever the government does is in the interest of Nigerians. We won’t like to do something that will throw the country into another problem.

“Even as we do that, we are pleading with Labour. They are partners in this project called ‘Nigeria’ and we expect them to join hands with the federal government  as it strives to look for solutions that will take Nigeria to the desired prosperity,” he said

He further said that the tripartite committee was set up to address the need to identify common ground, appealing to the unions not to let all that they have achieved thus far be undermined and expressing hope that an agreement might still be reached with them.




     

     

    “Our message is that of an appeal and the need for Labour to see reason with the government. That was even the basis for setting up the tripartite committee that was made up of Organised Labour, the sub-nationals and the federal government. This was because the government just didn’t want to make unilateral decisions. In any case, the position on the wage regime is not a one-sided thing.

    “We expect that they will see reason with the government. That is why we are calling on them to show understanding by not embarking on the strike because we don’t want that at this point. A strike is not the solution to our problem. We are continuing our negotiation with them. The minister and other stakeholders are still talking to them and we believe that we will find a common ground,” he added.

    In January, the federal government inaugurated a 37-member tripartite committee with a mandate to come up with a new National Minimum Wage for the country.

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    The 37-man committee has members cutting across the federal and state government, private sector and Organised Labour and is chaired by the former Head of the Civil Service of the Federation, Bukar Goni Aji.

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