By: Emmanuel Ibitoye
The National Labour Congress (NLC) has put forward a case for the Nigerian Federal Government to consider a monthly minimum wage of N1 million. NLC President Joe Ajaero, in an interview on Arise Television, emphasized that the proposed increase is necessary to align with the country’s economic conditions and other relevant indicators.
Ajaero highlighted the impact of the rising dollar against the naira and the prevailing economic challenges, rendering the initial N200,000 minimum wage proposal untenable. He pointed to the escalating prices of food items and inflationary pressures as factors justifying the demand for a higher minimum wage.
The NLC president mentioned ongoing discussions with the Federal Government, with a meeting scheduled for Monday to address issues related to the strike notice issued by the NLC and Trade Union Congress (TUC). He emphasized that the demands from organized labor consider the cost of living index, taking into account the current economic realities.
Ajaero expressed concerns about the affordability of essential items, such as a bag of rice costing between N60,000 to N70,000, and stressed the need for a minimum wage that ensures workers can meet their basic needs. The organized labor has issued a 14-day nationwide strike notice, prompting discussions between labor representatives and the government.
Despite the call for higher wages, President Bola Ahmed Tinubu’s administration appealed to workers not to embark on a strike, considering the country’s economic conditions.