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NLC, TUC task Wike on new minimum wage

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Organised Labour in Nigeria has tasked Governor Nyesom Wike of Rivers State to conclude and sign a negotiated agreement with the Organised Labour on consequential salary adjustment based on the new national minimum wage and to implement the annual salary increment in the state.

READ ALSO: Rivers seals off NLC secretariat as minimum wage dispute escalates

These demands were contained in a statement issued by the president of the Nigerian Labour Congress (NLC), Ayuba Wabba, and his counterpart in the Trade Union Congress (TUC), Qadiri Olaleye, made available to reporters on Monday.

The labour movement had cited some sore points in industrial relations in the state and tasked the governor to address the issues urgently to avoid industrial relations crisis in the state.

According to Labour, some of the persisting sore points in industrial relations in Rivers State include: Failure of the government to conclude and sign an agreement with Organized Labour as required by extant labour statutes on the implementation of the new national minimum wage which became effective since April 18, 2019 when the new national minimum wage of N30, 000 (Thirty Thousand Naira only) became Jaw Nigeria.

Others include; Non-implementation of the annual salary increments by the Rivers State Government under since Wike assumed office 2015; Non-implementation of promotions by the Rivers State Government since 2015; and Non-payment of outstanding salary arrears for teachers including February and March 2016 salaries which were unpaid due to the biometric test ordered by the State Government.

Others include: Non-payment of health workers in October 2017 owing to their participation in the National JOHESU strike; Non-payment of gratuity and pensions to pensioners since Wike assumed office as the Governor of Rivers State in 201 5 and the failure to clear the arrears of pension and gratuity indebtedness, which labour leaders said have become the living nightmare of senior citizens who are allegedly being punished for serving the state.

The labour movement also accused the Rivers state government of withholding of statutory checks off deductions due to trade unions in the state and labour centers including the Nigeria Labour Congress; as well as non-Inclusion of tertiary institutions and the new national minimum wage scheme adopted by the Rivers State government.

The statement in order to stop further deterioration in the state made the following demands: That the “Government should conclude and sign a negotiated agreement with the Organized Labour on consequential salary adjustment based on the new national minimum wage; Implementation of annual salary increment by Rivers State Government; Implementation of arrears of promotions by the Rivers State Government from 2015 to date; Payment of the outstanding salary arrears for teachers comprising February and March 2016 salaries which were unpaid due to the biometric test ordered by the State Government.”

Others include: “Payment of health workers their salaries for October 2017 withheld due to their participation in the National JOHESU strike; Release of the withheld statutory check off dues to workers organizations in Rivers State and Payment of gratuity and pension to pensioners suspended since the assumption in office as the Governor of Rivers State in 2015.”