The Trade Union Congress of Nigeria (TUC), has said that plans by some states not to pay the minimum wage would not deter it from submitting a proposal to review workers’ salaries.
The TUC said this in a 13-point communique signed by its President, Bobooi Kaigama, at the end of its National Executive Council meeting in Lagos.
Some state governors had said they could no longer pay the N18,000 minimum wage signed into law in March 2011 by former President Goodluck Jonathan.
The governors blamed it on the poor state of the economy, which was heightened by the dwindling prices of oil.
The TUC said in the communique that the statement attributed to the governors was diversionary, as minimum wage was due for upward review.
It said that it was regrettable that governors make excuses when issues concern the interests of workers and the masses.
“The question of imposition does not arise since the negotiations leading to the enactment of minimum wage passed through all the tenets of the International Labour Organisation’s tripartism.
“The Nigeria Employers’ Consultative Association (NECA), the government, as well as the organised labour and government (as regulator), were all involved,’’ the communique said.
It called on the Federal Government to settle all outstanding arrears of salaries, promotion, and other allowances owed federal workers since compilation of the indebtedness had since been concluded.
The communique commended the federal government for the bail-out extended to needy states to pay arrears of workers’ salary and urged affected states to ensure that the bail-out funds were used judiciously.
On fuel scarcity, the communique urged the government to revamp existing oil refineries and build new ones to end incessant scarcity and the fuel subsidy issue in the country.
It also urged government to step up the fight against crude oil theft, oil pipeline vandalism, as well as corruption in the oil and gas sector, to boost employment.
The communique further called on the government to review the list of 42 prohibited items in its foreign exchange policy to enable genuine manufacturers to access needed raw materials.