By Ese Awhotu
As negotiations continue between the nation’s labour unions and government on an acceptable figure as minimum wage to workers, the Federal Government has rejected a proposal by the state governors to pay N22,500 minimum wage.
The Minister of Labour and Productivity, Chris Ngige, stated government’s position on the matter, yesterday, during a phone interview on Channels Television’s Sunrise Daily.
Ngige said the governors have not even done enough with their N22,500 proposal.
He disclosed that, “I told them that this N22,500 was even rejected by the Federal Government.”
According to the minister, the national minimum wage is a national legislation being driven by the Federal Government of Nigeria in pursuance to item 34 of the Exclusive Legislative list.
Ngige criticised the governors for the figure, saying N22,500 is even below the N24, 000 agreement by the Federal Government.
Recall that the Nigerian Governors Forum, NGF, had said that states can only pay N22,500, against the N30,000 being demanded by the labour unions.
The governors took this decision after an emergency meeting of the Nigeria Governors’ Forum in Abuja late Tuesday night.
Chairman of the Forum and Zamfara State Governor, Abdul’Aziz Yari, said that the decision of the governors was based on the current realities on the ground.
The Nigeria Labour Congress, NLC and Trade Union Congress, TUC, have however, insisted on their N30,000 minimum wage demand, declaring that no going back on the November 6 date for a national strike if government fails to meet their demand before that time.