The Nigeria Labour Congress (NLC) has called on the Federal Government to reconstitute the tripartite committee to negotiate a new minimum wage in view of the current economic recession facing the country.
The current national minimum wage law, which prescribed N18,000 was enacted in 2011.
However, increase in pump price of petroleum from N97 per litre to N145, with its attendant effect on cost of transportation, free-fall of the naira, rise in price of food stuffs, other commodities and services, has made the current minimum wage barely enough to cater for the needs of the average Nigerian worker.
The situation is made worse by inability of some states to pay workers’ salaries as at when due, leading to untold hardships in the land.
Speaking at the 59th Annual General Meeting (AGM) of the Congress in Lagos yesterday, NLC President, Comrade Ayuba Wabba said it was high time the National Minimum Wage Act should be renegotiated.
He said: “The developments within the economy which has made nonsense of the purchasing power of the workers make the case for a new National Minimum Wage urgent.
“We hope that we will not be pushed into taking action that would be costly for the economy, which is already in deep trouble as it were.
“Our standpoint is that any of the parties to the negotiation who may have reasons why we shouldn’t have a new National Minimum Wage should bring those arguments to the negotiation table”.