“You would recall that after the 21-day and seven-day ultimatums we issued elapsed on Wednesday, June 9 2021 and we are supposed to commence three days warning strike, but stayed action due to the intervention of the traditional rulers.
“In view of that, the Organised Labour held an emergency meeting today Monday, 14th June 2021 and resolved that, since all the necessary protocols were followed in order to pursue our legitimate demands from the government to see the need to pay the last tranche of August 2016, implement our promotions of over a decade and conclude the national minimum wage negotiation, but which turns futile,” Iya said while addressing journalists on Tuesday.
The Organize Labour therefore enjoined all workers to proceed on indefinite strike action as from Tuesday 15th June, 2021 immediately until an amicable resolution is reached with the Government on our demands”
The state governor Abdullahi Sule in reaction said he is willing to pay all legitimate remunerations once the state financial capacity improves.
The governor made the remarks when he received his coordinators recently at the government house.
He said,” As long as we have the money, without being asked, we will address it and pay”
“All my life, I have been promoted. I went through promotion from a simple Engineer, to Engineer I, Engineer II, to Senior Engineer, Principal Engineer, to Assist Engineer, Engineer and then I became Managing Director.
“How could I then deny any worker the right to be promoted?”
The organised labour in Taraba State has suspended its industrial action declared over the N30,000 minimum wage to workers in the state.
Chairman of the Taraba State Joint Public Service Negotiating Council, Musa Buhari, announced the suspension of the strike on Thursday at a press conference in Jalingo, the state capital.
Members of the organised labour in Taraba, comprising the Nigeria Labour Congress (NLC) and Trade Union Congress (TUC) began the strike on March 22 over the failure of the government to implement the new national minimum wage.
Musa explained that the decision to suspend the strike was as a result of an agreement with the state government to work out modalities for the implementation of the new minimum wage within three months – from April to June.
He called on civil servants in the state to resume work immediately, but report any attempt of victimisation on account of compliance with the industrial action.
Read the full text of Musa Buhari at the briefing below:
Fellow workers of Taraba State,
We bring you fraternal greetings and appreciation for your commitment to the struggle for the Implementation of the New National Minimum Wage of Thirty Thousand (N30,000.00) Naira only in the State.
Recall that the Organized Labour under the auspices of SJPSNC directed Workers to resume Industrial Strike Action on the 22 March 2021 over non-implementation of the New National Minimum Wage the State which you fully complied.
During the period of the strike action, the organized labour has had series of meaningful dialogue with the Government.
Modalities for implementation of the New National Minimum Wage within three months (i.e., April to June 2021) are being worked out.
Consequently, the Industrial Strike Action is hereby suspended, and all workers are directed to resume work immediately.
Workers are equally enjoined to report any attempt of victimization on account of participating in the strike action from any quota to the Organized Labour.
The Federal Government has announced the reduction of the Premium Motor Spirit (PMS), popularly known as petrol from N168 to N163.
This was disclosed by the Minister of Labour and Employment, Dr Chris Ngige, after meeting with the organised labour which began around 9 pm on Monday and ended at 1:30 am on Tuesday.
According to the Minister, a technical committee has been set up to ensure price stability in the industry.
Ngige stated that the committee, which will report back to the larger house on January 25, will appraise the market forces and other things that would ensure stability in the industry.
The President of the Nigeria Labour Congress, Mr Ayuba Wabba, also maintained the position of the minister, saying that the agreement was reached by both sides.
The product presently dispenses at N168, following the decision of the Petroleum Products Marketing Company to increase the ex-depot price of petrol from N147.67 per litre to N155.17 per litre in November.
Meanwhile, there is no conclusion yet on the demand for a reversal of the electricity tariff and the Federal Government said talks were ongoing with the distribution companies.
For the sixth time since the current administration announced a hike in the pump price of petrol and electricity tariff in November, members of the organized labour movement and the Federal Government’s team have been holding series of talks, to continue the discussions on the demand of the workers union.
Both the Nigeria Labour Congress (NLC) and the Trade Union Congress (TUC) had called for a reversal of the recent hike, threatening to embark on a nationwide strike and protests, the reason why the government had to convene a meeting a month ago.
At the last meeting, the Federal Government explained that it needed one week to make further consultations.
The Federal Government on Thursday convened another meeting with members of the organised labour movement.
This comes after an attempt to resolve the impasse between the government and workers’ unions over the recent hike in the price of petrol and electricity tariff failed on Sunday.
In his opening remarks at Thursday’s meeting in Abuja, the Minister of Labour and Employment, Dr Chris Ngige, said Sunday’s event was not a walkout but a recess.
He insisted that both parties – the government and the labour unions – were working for the betterment of the nation.
Ngige stressed that the issues at stake, which included the hike in electricity tariff and the price of petrol, do not only affect the citizens but also those on the government’s side.
He was hopeful that the meeting would produce the results that would be beneficial to both parties.
The Secretary to the Government of the Federation (SGF), Mr Boss Mustapha, who was also at the meeting, addressed the labour leaders.
He gave an assurance that the government would ensure that resolutions reached would be for the benefit of the Nigerian people.
Mustapha also thanked the labour leaders for their show of patriotism, stressing that what happened on Sunday was a recess and not a breakdown of discussions.
On his part, TUC President, Peter Esele, stressed the need for sincerity on the part of the government to enable the meeting to arrive at a logical conclusion.
He also appealed to the conveners of the meeting to allow the media stay till the end of the discussion for the purpose of transparency
The NLC President, Ayuba Wabba, was absent at the meeting, but he was represented by the General Secretary of the National Union of Electricity Employees (NUEE), Joe Ajaero.
Ajaero disagreed with the remarks of the labour minister and the SGF that the last meeting was a recess, insisting that it did not end peacefully.
He also insisted that the agenda for discussion should be presented for adoption before going forward.
After the representatives from both sides made their remarks, the meeting went into a technical session.
Others in attendance include the Minister of State for Labour and Employment, Festus Keyamo; the Minister of State for Petroleum Resources, Timipre Sylva; and the Minister of Humanitarian Affairs, Sadiya Farouk.
The government has continued to engage the labour unions in discussions since October when the Nigeria Labour Congress (NLC) and the Trade Union Congress (TUC) threatened to embark on a nationwide protest over the increased prices.
On their part, the NLC and TUC have consistently maintained that the government should reverse the prices and provide palliatives to cushion the immediate effects of the hike before it engages them in a dialogue.
A meeting to address the issues on Sunday was stalled after the organised labour movement staged a walkout to protest what they described as government’s breach of agreement.
The Organised Labour in Niger State has cancelled its initial plans following the suspension of the strike action billed to take place today (Monday).
The members had earlier come out dressed, bearing placards various inscriptions and ready for a protest march but they were told to shelve the plan.
Nigerian Labour Congress (NLC) secretary in the state, Salihu Mohammed told Channels Television that the protest would have held despite the suspension of the strike, but the Police had advised them to cancel it.
He added that the union aligning itself with the directive of the national body reiterates the fact that the strike is only suspended and not called off, and if the Federal Government fails to meet its own part of the agreement reached, organised labour would be back on the street in the state.
The Media Officer of the Union and Chairman Nigerian Union of Journalists (NUJ) in Niger State, Abdul Idris via a telephone conversation says organized labour in the state has also called on the state government to address the challenges of insecurity and bad conditions of some of the state roads.
In a bid to avert a planned nationwide industrial action, a delegation of the Federal Government is currently in a meeting with the leadership of Nigeria Labour Congress (NLC), Trade Union Congress (TUC) and other Labour unions.
The Minister of Labour and Employment, Chris Ngige led the Federal Government delegation. The Minister of Finance, Mrs Zainab Ahmed, Minister of Budget and National Planning, Senator Udo Udoma are also part of the Federal Government delegation.
The meeting which is currently holding at the nation’s capital in Abuja is aimed at addressing various issues including the new national minimum wage proposed by the union.
The labour leaders are insisting that the executive must transmit the new minimum wage structure as agreed to by the presidential tripartite committee, to the National Assembly or risk a resumption of the strike it had earlier suspended.
President Muhammadu Buhari had during his 2019 budget presentation to the National Assembly last month, announced that a high-powered technical committee would be set up to review the resolution of the tripartite committee on the minimum wage.
But the unions had vowed not to be part of the planned review by the high-powered technical committee as announced by the president.
They insisted that all discussions had ended on the new minimum wage as the labour union has taken a stand.
Organised labour has suspended its planned nationwide strike.
The strike had been scheduled to commence on Tuesday to ensure that the Federal Government meets the demand of workers for a new national minimum wage.
However, the National Chairman of the Nigeria Labour Congress, Ayuba Wabba, announced the suspension at the end of the meeting of the tripartite committee set up to come up with the new minimum wage late on Monday.
According to Wabba, the decision to suspend the strike was taken after agreements were reached and documents signed.
The Chairman of the tripartite committee said it would present its report to President Buhari on Tuesday.
The committee, however, failed to reach consensus over new minimum wage proposals as the Federal government insisted on N24,000 and Labour N30, 000.
The Minister of Labour and Productivity, Senator Chris Ngige, has described the 14-day ultimatum issued by the organised labour over the new minimum wage as a blackmail and an attempt to intimidate the Federal Government.
Ngige made the comments on Thursday at a press briefing.
He said the organised labour cannot apply force or issue threats during negotiations as it contravenes the International Labour Organisation conventions and the Nigerian labour laws.
He further stated that the presidential committee charged with the task of working out details of the new wage package had almost completed its assignment except that agreement on figures were yet to be reached.
He, therefore, asked the labour unions to wait as he plans to meet President Muhammadu Buhari today (Friday) to brief him on the progress made so far on the negotiations for a new minimum wage.
The Labour leaders issued the ultimatum on Wednesday, stating that the National Minimum Wage Committee commenced work in March 2018 with timelines to deliver on its mandate by August/ September 2018.
They also accused Ngige of delaying the process of arriving at a new minimum wage which workers had been expecting since 2016.
Nigeria’s President, Muhammadu Buhari, will formally launch the Economic Recovery and Growth Plan (ERGP) 2017-2020 on Wednesday, April 5.
A statement issued on Tuesday by the President’s spokesman, Mr Femi Adesina, revealed that the ceremony will take place at the Council Chambers of the Presidential Villa in Abuja, the Federal Capital Territory.
The statement explained that the launch is “in furtherance of the current administration’s drive to sustain and build on the successes so far recorded in tackling corruption, improving security and revamping the economy.
The ERGP, which unveils a road map for Nigeria’s economic recovery, growth and sustainable development, was made public on March 7, while President Buhari was on his medical vacation in the United Kingdom.
The Media Adviser to the Minister of Budget and National Planning, Akpandem James, had said the ceremonial presentation will take place when the President returns from his vacation.
The Federal Government has released the Economic Recovery and Growth Plan (ERGP) which unveils a road map for Nigeria’s economic recovery, growth and sustainable development.
This was according to a statement issued on Tuesday by the Media Adviser to the Minister of Budget and National Planning, Akpandem James.
According to the statement, the development of the plan went through a rigorous process including wide consultation and robust engagements with stakeholders from a range of relevant fields.
They include: economic experts from the public and private sectors, academia, the Organised Private Sector, Civil Society groups, Organised Labour, sub-regional governments, International Development Partners (including the World Bank, International Monetary Fund and African Development Bank), the National Economic Council (NEC) and the National Assembly.
The statement hinted that the Plan has been approved by the Federal Executive Council, adding that its ceremonial presentation would take place when President Muhammadu Buhari returns from vacation.
Achieving Structural Economic Change
The statement read: “The core vision of the Plan is one of sustained inclusive growth. There is an urgent need as a nation to drive structural economic transformation with an emphasis on improving both public and private sector efficiency.
“The aim is to increase national productivity and achieve sustainable diversification of production, to significantly grow the economy and achieve maximum welfare for the citizens, beginning with food and energy security.
“The Plan envisages that by 2020, Nigeria would have made significant progress towards achieving structural economic change with a more diversified and inclusive economy. Overall, the Plan is expected to deliver on Five key broad outcomes namely: a stable macroeconomic environment, agricultural transformation and food security, sufficiency in energy (power and petroleum products), improved transportation infrastructure and industrialisation focusing on small and medium scale enterprises.
“Realising that the country’s economy would remain on a path of decline if nothing was immediately done to change the trajectory, the present administration, when it assumed office, embarked on strategic moves to halt the trend and redirect the course of the country’s economy and growth process.
A Knowledge-Based Economy
“The process started with the development of the Strategic Implementation Plan (SIP) for the 2016 Budget of Change as a short-term intervention. The ERGP, a Medium Term Plan for 2017 – 2020, builds on the SIP and has been developed for the purpose of restoring economic growth while leveraging the ingenuity and resilience of the Nigerian people.
“The Plan seeks to eliminate the bottlenecks that impede innovations and market based solutions, recognises the need to leverage Science, Technology and Innovation (STI) to build a knowledge-based economy, and is consistent with the aspirations of the UN’s Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs).
“The ERGP differs in several ways from previous strategies and plans as it:
is anchored on focused implementation which is at the core of the delivery strategy over the next four years;
outlines bold initiatives such as ramping up oil production to 2.5mbpd by 2020, privatising selected public enterprises/assets, and revamping local refineries to reduce petroleum product imports by 60 percent by 2018;
builds on existing sectoral plans such as the National Industrial Revolution Plan and the Nigeria Integrated Infrastructure Master-plan;
signals a changing relationship between the public and private sector based on close partnership.
utilises the value of the merger of budget and planning functions into one Ministry to create a better and stronger link between annual budgets and the ERGP; and
provides for strong coordination with the States to ensure that the Federal and sub-regional governments work towards the same goals.
Vision Of Inclusive Growth
“The thinking behind the development of the Plan was driven by several fundamental principles, including a focus on tackling constraints to growth; leveraging the power of the private sector and promoting national cohesion and social inclusion, as well as allowing markets to function.
“The Plan has three broad strategic objectives which are expected to help achieve the vision of inclusive growth: restoring growth, investing in the people, and building a globally competitive economy.
“The ERGP focuses on achieving macroeconomic stability and economic diversification by undertaking fiscal stimulus, ensuring monetary stability and improving the external balance of trade.
“The delivery mechanism has been identified as a major determining factor in the successful implementation of the Plan. The implementation strategy therefore focuses on prioritising the identified strategies, establishing a clear system of accountability for well-defined assignment of responsibilities, setting targets and developing detailed action plans, allocating resources to prioritised interventions, creating an enabling policy and regulatory environment, developing an effective monitoring and evaluation system to track progress, and using effective communication strategies”.
The Nasarawa State government and organised labour have reached a consensus over the lingering industrial dispute propelled by the payment of workers’ emolument in percentages.
The consensus was reached after a meeting of the tripartite committee set up by the state government at the deputy governor’s office in Lafia, the state’s capital in north-central Nigeria.
The meeting officially brought to climax series of meetings held by the committee with a view to resolving discrepancies that led to the July/August industrial action in the state and the continuous payment of workers’ salaries in percentages.
No Victor, No Vanquish
Giving a brief of the meeting which lasted for six hours, Chairman of the committee and Deputy Governor of Nasarawa State, Mr Silas Agara, told Channels Television that the state government and the labour union have amicably resolved all contending issues.
He said due to a number of factors considered by both parties, they have decided to shift grounds to allow a peaceful decision in the benefit and interest of the workers.
“We have amicably come to the final position and we have resolved all issues that made workers of Nasarawa State go on strike.
“Government on its own side shifted grounds, labour too have shifted grounds and as it is, there is no victor, no vanquish,” he said.
The 6-point agreement, reached by both labour and government, has the input of the representative of the Federal Ministry of Labour and Employment.
The agreement included the payment of July salaries by 50% which would be paid in two tranches to commence on Tuesday, December 13 with the other part to be paid in January 2017.
Consequently, the agreement also involved the state government paying December salaries by 50% due to shortfall in allocation from the Federal Government while the government would device a means to pay full salaries in 2017, even if it means accumulating two months allocations.
The government also agreed to pay the remaining months arrears from the first quarter of 2017 as soon as the economic situation of the state improves.
The organised labour, who spoke through Comrade Sule Odeh, expressed satisfaction and promised to cooperate with the government.
“We have signed an agreement between us and the government because all issues have been resolved, especially the issue of July/August salary payment which the government has agreed to pay” he said.
The representative of the Federal Ministry of Labour and Employment, Dalhatu Ahmad, on his part, appreciated both parties for reaching the consensus.