A few days after the Nigerian Labour Congress (NLC) under the leadership of Comrade Ayuba Wabba placed a demand in a letter written to the federal government to increase the minimum wage from the current N18,000 to N56,000, a splinter group has upped the stakes and is calling on government to pay N90,000.
The NLC faction led by Comrade Joe Ajaero, in rejecting the N56,000 minimum wage demand of the Ayubba-led faction, stated that the sum was grossly inadequate and not in tune with the economic realities faced by workers.
Vanguard reports that Ajaero announced the new demand at a pre-May Day symposium, titled, “Inclusive Socio-Economic Space for Sustainable Development.”
The factional NLC president told his audience that his faction of NLC was not part of the N56,000 proposal because the cost of living today and other socio-economic realities workers were faced with in the midst of the current exchange rate of the Nigerian currency, it was obvious that the N56,000 was off the mark.
He explained that his group was demanding N90,000 national minimum wage based on the current exchange rate, noting that should the exchange rate go above N500 per dollar, NLC would demand for more than N90,000.
He said: “No sacrifice is too much to liberate the Nigerian workers. Every year, we go to the stadium to salute those who have been enslaving us, those who have refused to pay us minimum living national wage. But since last year, we have been forced to gather under the bridge of the National Stadium, which we have named `Workers Freedom Square’.
“We will gather, match through the streets, take the May Day to the real owners, the Nigerian workers and masses, to tell them that there is no electricity despite the astronomical tariff, that there is no fuel, that there are no good roads, that public universities are being closed down, that there are no jobs and so on and so forth,” he said.