For those believing that the report of the tripartite committee that approves Thirty thousand naira (N30, 000) minimum wage for Nigeria workers is something that guarantees a smooth sailing to its final destination where it will eventually find its way to the national assembly in other that it becomes law may have to shelve the thought as the minister of information, Alhaji Lai Mohammed shockingly referred to the report by the committee as “recommendation” which the president would “consider” and then “make his views known in due course”
The minister made this shocking revelation when briefing statehouse correspondent and that which was monitored by urban express news online.
Continuing, the minister, when asked to throw more light on what was said, his said a “recommendation” was submitted, Mr. president will get back to the committee after he has studied the “recommendation”
On whether a review of the revenue sharing formula would be in the offing, if the new minimum wage is approved to enable state states to pay, he said ‘Once again, like I said, a “recommendation” has been made and in responding to the recommendation, all these views will be taken into consideration
But many ardent watchers of how the event was unfolding believe the organised labour has been sabotaged by the government if after agreeing to pay the sum of thirty thousand naira as minimum wage in the agreements reached with the tripartite committee where all stakeholders including government representatives were ably represented, to say the least.
Others wondered why is it that after having N30, 000 as a negotiated figure coming from their own representatives, how come presidency does not trust the capacity of those it appointed
Meanwhile, from the look of things, the Federal Government might have successfully hoodwinked the organised labour into calling off its planned industrial action while at the same time having the last laugh on workers’ demand for a 30,000 minimum wage.
One after the other, unions across the country had expressed a desire to ride out the storm alongside the organised labour. Many Nigerians, believing a major strike was imminent, had also hurriedly stocked up on fuel and other essential items.
But the Federal Government seemed to have tinkered craftily with time, engaging labour leaders in a protracted dialogue that began 11:30 a.m. and dragged into the D-Day
If workers felt relieved the ‘mother of all strikes’ had been called off because labour leaders won the deal, signals from the presidency are showing the Federal Government has effectively deflated enthusiasm for the planned industrial action, while at the same time retaining the trump card to implement its own version of a new minimum wage.
A reliable labour source who was at the make-or-mar meeting had confided in Urban Express News correspondent that indeed N30,000 was the final submission. But a witty agreement moved by the Federal Government had ensured the leaders kept a sealed lip until President Mohammadu Buhari received the report of the tripartite committee.
Nigerian workers have since waited anxiously for the president to mouth the happy disclosure. But this might never come. The conspicuous avoidance of the ‘N30, 000 ’ in Buhari’s speech has raised concerns within labour ranks that the presidency is unwilling to transmit the agreed deal to the National Council of State and the National Assembly.
“I want to assure you all that we will immediately put in place the necessary machinery that will close out these open areas. Our plan is to transmit the executive bill to the National Assembly for passage within the shortest possible time”.
“I am fully committed to having a new National Minimum Wage Act in the very near future. As the executive arm commences its review of your submission, we will continue to engage you all in closing any open areas presented in this report. I, therefore, would like to ask for your patience and understanding in the coming weeks” president buhari disclosed in his speech.