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N30,000 minimum wage non-negotiable – NLC

The Nigeria Labour Congress says the bill to transfer minimum wage from exclusive list to concurrent list at the National Assembly is an attempt to enslave Nigerian workers.

Ayuba Wabba, President of NLC, disclosed this at a meeting with the House of Representatives’ leadership on Tuesday in Abuja.

Mr. Ayuba said the bill would return Nigeria to the era of slavery if passed.

He added that Nigerian workers needed reasonable laws, adding that the minimum wage was part of the International Labour Organisation Convention.

According to him, the ILO reinforces the provision in its constitution, such as convention 26 as ratified by 90 percent of member countries and convention 131 of 1970.

He noted that Nigeria ratified the convention by adopting the monthly wage system, adding that it became binding on member states once a convention was ratified.

He added that the excuse that some states could not afford the N30,000 minimum wage was not tenable.

“No one can negotiate below the N30,000. The ILO convention is binding on Nigeria as a sovereign state and not on subnational like states,” Mr. Wabba explained.

Femi Gbajabiamila, Speaker House of Representatives, explained that the parliament remained a labour-friendly one, adding that it has not been found wanting on anything concerning Nigerian workers.

A bill to alter the constitution to transfer minimum wage prescription from the Exclusive Legislative List to the Concurrent Legislative List passed second reading at the House on February 23.

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