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Oyo NLC To Protest In Ibadan Today Over Minimum Wage

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The Oyo State Chairman of the Nigeria Labour Congress, Waheed Olojede, yesterday called on members of the union, including nurses, to join a peaceful protest against what he described as the refusal of government to accept N30,000 as the minimum wage for workers.

Olojede made the call while speaking during the inauguration of the Nurses House financed by the National Association of Nigeria Nurses and Midwives, Oyo State Council in Ibadan.

He said Nigerian workers were suffering untold hardships while lawmakers elected to represent them had access to unlimited amounts of money in the name of salaries and allowances.



The labour leader said the protest would be held on Tuesday (today) in Ibadan to press home the union’s demand for the payment of the proposed new minimum wage to workers.

Olojede said, “I urge nurses and midwives in the state to join the planned protest. It sounds absurd that politicians whose flamboyant lifestyles are evident for the public to see could be complaining of inability to pay a meagre N30,000 as minimum wage.

“The time is now for the struggle. Today, we are complaining of minimum wage. We are calling on all our members and affiliates to join us in the protest which will be a peaceful one. We will march through all major roads from the Labour House on Tuesday (today).

“A senator earns N13.5m as salaries and the same politician is reluctant to pay a mere N30,000 as minimum wage. Nothing will make us change our mind. Initially, we did not agree on N30,000 but when we considered the private sector, we accepted.”

Chairman of the NANNM, Rukayat Afonja, urged the government to prioritise the welfare of workers in the country.

She said, “It becomes pertinent and significant to appeal to our major employers, the federal and state governments, to stop playing cards with the welfare of the workers, particularly nurses and midwives in their demands and agitations for improved conditions of service.”

The Nigeria Labour Congress, the Trade Union Congress and the United Labour Congress had last week threatened to go on strike on November 6, 2018 if the Federal Government failed to take the plight of Nigerian workers more seriously.

Specifically, the labour unions said if the upward review of the national minimum wage was not acceded to by the governors and the Federal Government, they would have no option but to go on strike.

In a statement jointly signed by the NLC President, Ayuba Wabba; the TUC President, Bobboi Kaigama; and ULC President, Joe Ajaero, the unions lambasted the Federal Government for its decision to implement a ‘no work, no pay’ policy.

The statement read in part, “If nothing is responsibly done by the Federal Government to meet our demands on Monday, November 6, we shall embark on a nationwide strike to compel this government to show more sensitivity to the plight of Nigerians and the suffering that is decimating our people on a daily basis.”

The unions said it was unfortunate that governors could kick against the N30, 000 minimum wage but still solicit votes from workers.

They asked workers to vote out those who had failed to protect their interests.

The statement added, “Nigerians are no longer surprised why governance in the nation seems to have become a huge joke if this is how they tackle other serious national issues. Imagine governors’ forum that has six representatives in the tripartite committee jumping in to make excuses after its representatives had made their submissions in the committee.”

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