24 October 2016, Sweetcrude, Abuja — The Federal Government’s proposed N24,000 minimum wage is based on critical facts and indices, according to Minister of Labour and Employment, Dr. Chris Ngige.
Dr. Ngige stated in Abuja that the proposed new wage was based on critical facts and indices that would not cause disequilibrium in the economy or upturn the national social order.
He spoke when he received the Director-General of Nigeria Employers Consultative Association, NECA, Mr Timothy Olawale, in his office.
Charging the new NECA boss to exceed the record of his predecessor, the minister reminded him that he had enormous task ahead of him.
Ngige had last week, while labour leaders were threatening to call out workers on a full strike over the minimum wage issue, announced that the Federal Government had offered N24, 000 to the workers.
But, the workers’ leaders countered, saying that N30, 000 was the amount agreed on by the tripartite-partner committee saddled with the responsibility.
The minister told the NECA director general that it was imperative for organised labour to accept the proposed figure instead of the N30,000 in line with social dialogue and the overall interest of the nation.
He appealed to NECA to weigh its influence on the organisers labour to accede to the new wage offer mutually agreeable to all the social partners.
According to him, Nigeria cannot afford rounds of labour crisis in this country, so it is imperative for organised labour to accept the new national minimum wage figure. “We need to arrive at a figure which the employers can afford to pay as an employee cannot fix a figure for the employer.
“Rather, it must be based on collective bargaining and mutual agreement by the tripartite partners.
“It is not a function of moving motions or voting at the National Tripartite Negotiation Committee to insist that the figure must be as the organised labour appears to make it look,” he said.