Minimum Wage Is Work In Progress, Says Ngige

 

The Minister of Labour and Employment, Chris Ngige, discussions are still ongoing for a new minimum wage for the country.

“The issue of the minimum wage is a work in progress”, he told journalists at the State House in Abuja on Thursday, after the National Executive Council meeting.

He explained that it is after the ongoing deliberations on the minimum wage  that a bill will be sent to the National Executive Council and subsequently referred to the National Council of State.

He said, “We are taking our deliberations to the National Executive Council and then we will close up on the 22nd of January at the National Council of State after which we will be able to say where we are going concerning the figures and frequency those that have exemptions.

“By then we will be ready to transmit to the National Assembly on or before 23rd of January.”

READ ALSO:  FG Fixes Jan 23 For Transmission Of Minimum Wage Bill To NASS

The Federal Government through the Labour Minister had in a meeting with the leadership of the NLC last week Tuesday resolved that the executive bill on minimum wage should be forwarded by January 23 to the National Assembly to prevent the planned strike.

The NLC had threatened to shut down the economy on January 28, and also vote against any candidate in the forthcoming elections that refuses to implement the proposed minimum wage of N30,000.

NUT Warns Against Unpaid Teachers’ Salaries

NUT, Teachers' SalariesThe national leadership of the Nigerian Union of Teachers (NUT) has warned against the non-payment of salaries and other entitlements of teachers in most Nigerian states.

The NUT President, Micheal Olukoya, gave the warning on Tuesday during an emergency National Executive Council meeting of the union in Kaduna State, northwest Nigeria.

He stated that such situation, if not properly addressed, could lead to an industrial dispute.

Mr Olukoya described the situation where teachers in some states were not being paid their salaries as totally unacceptable.

He appealed to the government at level to take the welfare of teachers in the country more seriously and ensure that their welfare was given proper attention in the interest of education development in Nigeria.

The NUT President equally expressed displeasure with the autonomy granted to the local governments in the management of primary school teachers’ salaries, rather than allowing the Universal Basic Education Board in each state to perform such function as enshrined in the law.

He urged the Federal Government to recruit only qualified teachers it promised to employ in 2016, noting that anything short of the right requirement for those employed might jeopardise the future of young Nigerians.

Olukoya further voiced his support for the ongoing strike by teachers in Bayelsa State as he pleaded with the state government to settle the six months unpaid teachers’ salaries.

The NUT members, on their part, emphasised that that the role of teachers to national development was one that could not be toyed with by any government.

They asked the Federal and state governments to urgently address all outstanding issues that could lead to any industrial action.

Nigeria Is In Depression, Not Just Recession – Issa Aremu

Issa AremuA member of the National Executive Council of the Nigeria Labour Congress (NLC), Issa Aremu, on Wednesday disagreed with latest report on NIgeria’s GDP that showed the nation’s economy is in recession.

He says Nigeria’s economy is in state of depression not just recession, hinging his claims on long outstanding payment of salaries.

“The minimum wage of 18,000 Naira was less than $45. Inflation has gone up and the minimum wage has collapsed,” Mr Aremu pointed out.

Speaking as a guest on Channels Television’s Sunrise Daily on Tuesday, Mr Aremu urged the Federal Government to reform the economy.

The labour union member believes that one of the key areas in which the economy could be reformed was through data gathering and planning which, in his opinion, was missing.

He also sought a return of the Ministry of Planning, saying that “it is the first step in getting out of recession”.

Female Lawyers Promote Girl Child Rights In Nigeria

Girl Child, Lawyer, FIDAFemale lawyers across the country have come together to figure out ways to enhance the development of the female gender in all its activities.

They gathered at the quarterly National Executive Council meeting of the International Federation of Women Lawyers (FIDA) held in Yenagoa, the Bayelsa State capital in Nigeria’s oil-rich region.

The event, themed “The Girl-Child in Contemporary Nigerian Society: Challenges and Prospects”, was formally declared open by the Chief Judge of Bayelsa State, Justice Kate Abiri.

Justice Abiri said that the essence of the meeting was to deliberate on the women course and the protection of children, not only in Nigeria but the world at large.

The keynote speaker, Professor Festus Emiri, emphasised the need for lawyers to begin to look at law from a contextual angle and perspective.

While another speaker, Barrister Koboeze, also stressed the importance of the passage of the Child Rights Law and its benefit, others opined that the Nigerian child needs more protection from the society.

The Bayelsa State Deputy Governor, John Jonah, was also present at the gathering. He said that the protection of children and women remains one of the achievements of the Governor Seriake Dickson-led administration.

President Buhari Hosts Tinubu, Awujale In London

Buhari, Tinubu, AwujalePresident Muhammadu Buhari, on Thursday, played host to the leader of the All Progressives Congress (APC), Asiwaju Bola Tinubu and the Awujale of Ijebuland, Oba Sikiru Adetona in London, United Kingdom.

The President shared photos of their visit via his Twitter handle on Thursday.

President Buhari has been away on a 10-day medical vacation to take care of an ear infection.

Buhari-Tinubu-Awujale
L: President Buhari with Asiwaju Bola Tinubu; R: President Buhari with the Awujale of Ijebu land

He was scheduled to end the vacation on Friday but would be arriving Nigeria on Sunday, June 19.

The Vice President, Professor Yemi Osinbajo, disclosed this to State House correspondents just before the National Executive Council meeting on Wednesday.

NLC Holds Re-Scheduled Elections

nlcThe Nigeria Labour Congress have reconvened in Abuja to hold last month’s elections which ended in a deadlock following allegation of bias against officials of the election committee.

This time around, former officials of the union, who are now politicians, were on hand to supervise the rescheduled elections

As the time of this report, voting exercise was peaceful while members of the union who protested against the procedure in February were satisfied with the process.

The election of a new national executive of the Nigeria Labour Congress (NLC) in February, had ended in chaos in Abuja on February 12.

Aggrieved delegates were caught on Channels Television camera smashing and emptying ballot boxes with ballot papers flying on the floor of the International Conference Centre.

The workers alleged that the ballot papers were designed to favour one of the candidates vying for the President of the union.

Candidates in the failed elections of the Nigeria Labour Congress (NLC) accused the union’s credentials committee of compromise and lack of diligence, which they said led to the irregularities that botched the elections.

The NLC leadership later re-scheduled the election for March 12 after meeting behind closed doors for about 10 hours six days after the aborted exercise.

The meeting was mediated by former labour leaders, including Hassan Sunmunu, Ali Ciroma and Governor Adams Oshiomole of Edo State.

NLC Fixes New Election Date

nlcThe leadership of the Nigeria Labour Congress NLC, has finally re-scheduled the aborted election meant to elect new National Executives for March 12. 

The union picked the date after meeting behind closed doors for about 10 hours.

The meeting was mediated by former labour leaders, including Hassan Sunmunu, Ali Ciroma and Governor Adams Oshiomole of Edo State.

According to governor Oshiomhole, the irregularities in the ballot papers, which led to last week’s inconclusive election, was never an attempt by any candidate to manipulate the polls.

The meeting also agreed that the union’s National Executive Council will remain in acting capacity.

On the other hand, the election organised by the credentials committee of the NLC was disrupted, as candidates had accused the committee of compromising the process, citing lack of diligence, which they said led to the irregularities that botched the elections.

Comrade Joe Ajaero, who was also an aspirant in the elections, said that the elections committee had to be more vigilant ahead of a rescheduled elections.

The Vice President of the Congress, Mr Issa Aremu, also alleged that there were plans by some forces within and outside the union to manipulate the list of screened candidates seeking positions as national officers of the union.

JUSUN Vow To Continue Industrial Action

Nigerian Lawyers Conference.The National Executive Counsel of the Judiciary Workers Staff Union (JUSUN) have urged its members to sustain the momentum of the industrial action embarked on by the union to press home their demand for financial autonomy .

Speaking at the end of the National Executive Council meeting of the Union, President of the Union, Mr Marwan Adamu, expressed concern over utterances by some lawyers condemning the action of the workers.

He however adds that the union will not be fazed, but continue in its struggle for independence and adherence to the rule of law.

They also urged the government of Edo state to pay the July 2014 salary arrears owed to the state judiciary workers.

The Union embarked on an industrial action following the refusal of the federal and state governments to implement the judgement of a federal high court ,which granted an order for financial autonomy to the judiciary .

LAW WEEKLY: Fapohunda Speaks On Reforms In Ekiti Judiciary

law weeklyOn this episode of Law Weekly, Attorney-General and Commissioner for Justice in Ekiti State, Mr Olawale Fapohunda, speaks on justice sector reforms in the state.

Also, we feature an interview with Governor Kayode Fayemi, who sent a message to the opposition, as the state counts down to its elections later this year.

The National Executive Council, NEC, of the Nigerian Bar Association recently adopted the electoral committee set up to midwife the elections of the NBA, scheduled for July 2014. The meeting which held in Ado Ekiti, the Ekiti State capital, ended on Friday, March 7.

Health Professionals Demand Removal of Minister

The Nigeria Union of Allied Health Professionals (NUAHP) has called for the immediate removal of the Minister of Health, Professor Onyebuchi Chukwu as well as a through probation into the management of teaching hospitals and allied institutions across the country.

These demands were made at the recently concluded National Executive Council (NEC) meeting which held at the Federal Medical Centre, Idi-Aba, Abeokuta, the Ogun State capital.

The health workers called for the removal of the minister over alleged discrimination and non-implementation of the presidential committee report in the health sector.

Speaking with journalists after its National Executive Council meeting, the (NUAHP) National President, Comrade Felix Faniran, expressed worry over increasing rate of sharp practices and financial impropriety in the administration of public teaching hospitals.

In a communique issued after the four day meeting, NUAHP called for an end to the appointment of Chief Medical Directors of tertiary health institutions without recourse to other medically qualified healthcare professionals.

The union however urged the Federal Government, National Assembly and Head of Service of the Federation to re organise, restructure and reposition the Federal Ministry of Health to accommodate other qualified healthcare professionals at the directorate levels without delay to promote industrial harmony in the sector.

Excess Crude Account: NEC advises FG, state government to settle out of court

The National Economic Council (NEC) on Wednesday urged Federal and states government to continue the peace talk on the excess crude oil account, which has been source of acrimony between the two parties.

The governors had after its meeting on Wednesday decided to head back to the Supreme Court to enforce the Federal Government’s adherence to the constitution.

The Council met on Thursday to discuss various issues concerning the economy. Vice President Namadi Sambo is the statutory chairman of the council which also comprises of governors of the 36 states of the federation, governor of the Central Bank of Nigeria, minister of National Planning, the Attorney General of the federation and minister of Justice, minister of state, finance.

Briefing State House Correspondents at the end of this week’s meeting, the Kwara State governor, Abdulfatah Ahmed said the council encouraged both parties to continue the consultations towards working out an amicable solution.

“After considering a report by the Committee on the out-of-court settlement on the excess crude account litigation on the extent of the ongoing negotiations between the Federal and state governments, NEC encouraged the counsels of both parties to continue the consultations towards working out an amicable solution,” he said.


Mr Ahmed who was accompanied to the briefing by his Gombe State counterpart, Ibrahim Dankwambo and the Minister of National Planning, Shamsuddeen Usman, however said the council’s position was advisory.