Organised labour on Friday sent a letter to the Minister of Labour and Employment, Dr Chris Ngige, to put pressure on the National Income, Salaries and Wages Commission to release the new minimum wage circular.
The President of the Trade Union Congress, Quadri Olaleye, who disclosed this in an exclusive interview with our correspondent, said the circular, which would be sent to state chapters of labour unions, would be the evidence that the new minimum wage structure had been implemented at the federal level.
He also said Labour would monitor the progress of the negotiation for the new minimum wage of N30,000 in all the states of the federation.
Negotiation over the new wage structure shifted to states after labour reached an agreement with the FG on the consequential adjustment on October 18, 2019.
The national secretariat of the Joint National Public Service Negotiating Council, which negotiated the consequential adjustment arising from the new minimum wage with the Federal Government, met state chairmen of the negotiating councils on Tuesday and directed that negotiation with state governments must begin immediately.
On the release of the new wage circular, the labour leader said it expected the FG to make it available by Monday.
“We have a challenge because after signing the agreement, the National Income, Salaries and Wages Commission had yet to release a circular that will be forwarded to state councils.
“We have written a letter to the minister of labour and Employment to instruct the NISWC to release the circular immediately so that states can make use of it. Four states have communicated with us that they are waiting for the circular. That circular is evidence that the new wage structure has been implemented at the federal level.
“Already, we (the NLC and TUC) have signed the letter for the labour minister and sent to him. By Monday, we expect the circular to be out. We are putting our machinery on the alert to ensure that the circular is released.”
On the negotiation at the state level, he said three vital documents that would guide the state councils in their negotiations with their respective state governments had been handed over to the state chairmen.
On Thursday, a source at the JNPSNC had told our correspondent that it sent letters to all state governors to begin negotiation with workers in their states. A copy of the letter sent to one of the governors, which was obtained by our correspondent, stated that all negotiations must end on or before December 31, 2019.
TUC President, Quadri Olaleye, said labour leaders would work with JNPSNC in each state to facilitate negotiation with state governments did not fail.