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Plateau NLC joins Nationwide Protest on Minimum Wage

by Christiana Gokyo, Jos

The Nigeria Labour Congress (NLC), Plateau State Council, has also joined in the nationwide protest, which is concerned on the move to transfer the National Minimum Wage from the Exclusive Legislative list to the concurrent Legislative list.

The state Vice Chairman of NLC, Comrade Sunday Akinfolarin, said a practice member bill that was moved by Hon. Garba Datti Muhammad, representing Sabon Gari Federal Constituency of Kaduna state and sponsored by few governors was on Tuesday, 23 February, 2021, rushed through its first and second readings.

He explained that, the bill seeks the transfer of the National Minimum Wage from exclusive legislative list to the concurrent Legislative list, adding that, the bill has been referred to the Ad-Hoc Committee on Constitution Review.

“The implication of transferring the national minimum wage, from the exclusive legislative list to the concurrent legislative list, is very dire and a license for State Governors to drag the country back to the era of ridiculous slave wages, which in the past had precipitated multifarious industrial crises in different parts of the country.”

Others, he said, “is the exponential creation and expansion of a community of the working poor with all the attendant consequences for social-economic cohesion, stability and progress.”

He also observed that, “This could lead to the exclusion of the private sector, both organized and unorganized, from the concept, rational and logic of a national minimum wage.

The members of the NLC met at the Secretariat Junction and matched to the state House of Assembly to appeal to the Speaker for their good judgment to take account of the gravity of the malevolent scheme afoot by some ‘retrogressive elements’ in the House of Representatives.

He also appealed to the House to intervene to guide the members of the state House of Assembly’s rights in case the bill comes before them.

Responding, the Speaker of the House, Hon. Ayuba Abok, assured that he would deliver their message, saying “The bill is yet to come to the state level; it’s still at the National House of Representatives.”

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