Minimum Wage: N250,000 demand not cast in stone – TUC President

The President of the Trade Union Congress (TUC), Festus Osifo, has said that the N250,000 minimum wage proposal by organized labour is both negotiable and not necessarily cast in stone.

Osifo made this statement in an interview on Channels TV’s Sunrise Daily on Friday.

He stated that the organized labour’s position is to establish a reasonable minimum wage that both parties can agree on.

According to him, the reason for the earlier nationwide strike was the federal government’s refusal to negotiate above the proposed N60,000, leaving the labour no choice but to embark on industrial action.

“What we have always said is that for us when we give figures, there is always a room to meander, to do some adjustments here and there. There is no figure that is cast in stone that both parties will be fixated upon. 

“One of the reasons that we went on industrial action the last time was because they told us that a kobo cannot even join the N60,000 proposal. That was one of the reasons that led to that industrial action.

“If not for that action, I don’t think the National Assembly would have said what they said yesterday, that they are ready and prepared to pass the minimum wage immediately after Sallah. We saw some conspiracies of delay here and there.

“So we are not fixated 100%,” Osifo said.

Other conversations beyond the minimum wage

Furthermore, Osifo said the unions had other conversations with the federal government during their meeting with the tripartite committee.

He said these conversations include what the federal government is doing to ensure ease of doing business in the country and stopping companies from exiting Nigeria.

We demanded that they tell us what the Ministers are doing to ensure that this trend of exodus of companies from Nigeria.

“Beyond the minimum wage conversation, some other conversations that we have also had in the tripartite committee is that the federal government does everything to ensure that companies exiting the country today.

“We just had that Guinness had said they are exiting. We had that Kimberly Clark also said they are exiting.

“Some of these decisions to exit did not happen overnight. What is the Minister of Trade and Investment doing to mitigate these exits,”  Usifo added.

What you should know

Earlier, Nairametrics reported the National Labour Congress (NLC) and TUC proposed a new wage of N615,000 to the federal government.

However, after extensive negotiations, the union agreed to a sum of 250,000.

In contrast, the government insisted on a payment of N62,000, arguing that the union’s proposed amount was unsustainable.

Additionally, the organized private sector, which was part of the tripartite committee on minimum wage, accepted the government’s proposed sum.

The rift between organized labour and successive governments remains unresolved resulting in legal disputes many times.

After the conclusion of the meeting of the tripartite committee, the proposals from each party were sent to President Tinubu. In turn, the president said he would send the proposals to the National Assembly for approval.



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