By Umar Muhammad Puma
Speaker of the House of Representatives, Yakubu Dogara, has assured the Nigerian Labour Congress (NLC) that the House will support its efforts to secure a living wage for worker.
He said the House will support ongoing efforts to secure not only a living wage for the Nigerian workers but to ensure that workers are sufficiently taken care of in retirement.
He also said that the NLC has lived up to expectation in discharging its role of protecting the interests and welfare of the Nigerian workers.
Dogara also saluted former leaders of labour for their leadership and sacrifices that ensured the continued existence of one united and robust labou organisation in Nigeria.
In a statement to commemorate the 40th anniversary of the founding of the NLC, the Speaker noted the brave and courageous moves taken by the congress, when necessary, to ensure that better rights and privileges are conveyed on the Nigerian worker.
He said, “Indeed, the NLC has come of age. It has played a pivotal role in the struggle for better rights and privileges for the Nigerian worker. The NLC since its founding by a military Decree has lived up to its responsibilities of articulating and pursing the enlightened interests of the working man and woman. It has sometimes confronted the authorities by using the mechanism of strikes and in some instances the mere threat of action has enough to bring relevant authorities to the negotiating table.
“We must use this occasion to salute the former leaders of Labour for their leadership and sacrifices that ensured the continued existence of one united and robust labour organisation in Nigeria. The present leadership must ensure that this legacy bequeathed to them is maintained and even surpassed. The NLC must remain strong, united and progressive. It must work in concert with both government and the private sector to enthrone a viable and strong economy for Nigeria, which is the only sustainable way to ensure better working conditions for the Nigerian worker.
“The major challenge facing Labour today is to negotiate a meaningful National Minimum Wage for Nigerian workers. I wish to lend the support of the House of Representatives to the ongoing effort to secure not only a living wage for the Nigerian worker but to ensure that in retirement workers are sufficiently taken care of. The labour of our heroes past shall never be in vain.”