The Nigeria Labour Congress has asked states yet to implement the new minimum wage and those owing workers salaries to prepare for mass industrial action and protests this New Year.
In its new year message issued Thursday night, by the NLC president, Ayuba Wabba, the congress said it was unfortunate that till now, some states have refused to pay the new national minimum wage.
It was titled, ‘Beyond survival: Nigerian workers and people deserve better in 2021.’
The union regretted that some states which had signed collective bargaining agreements with state councils of the labour movement on the payment of consequential salary adjustment and pension benefits owing to the new national minimum wage have started reneging on their commitment.
The congress stated, “Accordingly, we call on all our state councils still struggling with their state governments on the payment of the national minimum wage and consequential salary increase and those whose state governments have unilaterally cut wages and are owing workers salary arrears to prepare for mass industrial action and protests this New Year.
“Furthermore, we insist that government must make possible the enabling environment that would foster job creation and full employment in line with the constitutional responsibilities of the state to ensure the welfare and security of citizens.”
The NLC notes that unemployment and poverty are perfect recipes for the breakdown of law and order and are also harbingers of widespread anarchy.
To withstand further shocks from the resurgence of fresh outbreaks of COVID-19 and or other health and socio-economic dislocations, the union promised to design a recovery plan that rebuilds the social contract between government and societies and hoisted on the foundations of resilience.
“In order to achieve this, we must ensure that decent work is at the centre of government actions to bring back economic growth and build a new national and global economy that puts people and the planet first,” it added.
On insecurity, the congress said that it would unfold plans for a national advocacy campaign on the issue by convening a multi-stakeholder conference.