N615,000 minimum wage: FG yet to call us – TUC

Festus Osifo, the President of the Trade Union Congress, has stated that the government has not yet invited organized labor for discussions regarding the proposed new minimum wage. He conveyed this during his appearance as a guest on Arise Television on Wednesday.

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Osifo emphasized that the 25 and 35 percent pay increase announced by the government is considered a wage award, not a minimum wage. He expressed concerns that this wage award could be altered by the government at any time.

“The recent actions taken by the government do not serve as a replacement for the minimum wage; it is merely a wage award that remains subject to potential changes,” stated the TUC president.

He further highlighted that there has been no communication or meetings initiated by the government in the past month regarding the new minimum wage. Osifo emphasized that there was a pre-established timetable that should have facilitated discussions on the new minimum wage.

In January, the president established a tripartite committee comprising government, labor, and private sector representatives to evaluate the N30,000 minimum wage implemented during the tenure of former President Muhammadu Buhari.

The previous month, the two primary labor unions in the country, the NLC and the TUC, presented a proposal for a minimum wage of N615,000 to the committee.

The government refrained from announcing the new minimum wage during the May Day celebration on Wednesday due to its failure to accept labor’s demands.

Numerous stakeholders have criticized organized labor’s demands as excessive, arguing that the country’s economy cannot sustain such a high amount.

In defense of the proposed N615,000 minimum wage, Joe Ajaero, the president of the NLC, explained during an interview on Channels Television on Wednesday that the wage was determined after evaluating the current economic conditions and the requirements of an average Nigerian family of six  noteing that the previous minimum wage of N30,000 had expired on April 18.

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