Nigeria Expects Presidential Rule On Minimum Wage

Nigeria Expects Presidential Rule On Minimum Wage
Nigeria Expects Presidential Rule On Minimum Wage

The quest for a new minimum wage in Nigeria is set to reach a pivotal juncture today, Monday, June 10, 2024, as labor unions eagerly anticipate President Bola Ahmed Tinubu’s verdict on their proposed ₦250,000 minimum wage. This development follows the conclusion of discussions by the Tripartite Committee on National Minimum Wage, which saw the Nigerian Government and Organised Private Sector endorsing a ₦62,000 figure, in stark contrast to the labor’s considerably higher demand. The Nigeria Governor’s Forum has also voiced their opinion, labeling a ₦60,000 minimum wage as impractical under current economic conditions.

In light of the ongoing deliberations, NLC president Joe Ajaero, accompanied by union delegates, is attending a labor conference in Geneva, Switzerland, orchestrated by the International Labour Organisation (ILO). The future course of the nationwide strike hinges on the outcomes decided upon their return.

The backdrop to these discussions is a recent strike initiated by the Nigerian Labour Congress (NLC) and Trade Union Congress (TUC), pressing for a significant minimum wage adjustment alongside the revocation of a recent electricity tariff hike. The initial strike saw a temporary pause, allowing for a resumption of dialogue with government representatives, targeted at forging a consensus on an adjusted wage structure. This intermission was succeeded by an extensive six-hour roundtable with national legislators in Abuja.

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In an encouraging move towards resolution, President Tinubu has been actively involved, mandating the Minister of Finance, Wale Edun, to delineate the financial implications of a revised minimum wage within a two-day timeline. He further urged for cohesive efforts among government bodies, the organised private sector, and sub-national entities towards arriving at a sustainable wage agreement beneficial to all Nigerians.

Following the president’s directives, the financial blueprint for the proposed national minimum wage was submitted for Tinubu’s evaluation at the Presidential Villa, in a meeting also attended by the Minister of Budget and National Planning, Atiku Bagudu, last Thursday.

As the nation stands on the cusp of a potentially transformative labor policy, all eyes are on the Presidential Villa for a decision that could significantly influence the livelihoods of millions of Nigerian workers.

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