FG proposes N54,000 as new minimum wage

In the ongoing negotiations between the Nigerian government and organized labor on the national minimum wage, a new development has emerged. According to a highly reliable source within the Tripartite Committee on Minimum Wage, the federal government has now proposed a minimum wage of N54,000, up from its previous offer of N48,000.

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This new proposal comes after the Nigeria Labour Congress (NLC) and the Trade Union Congress (TUC) walked out of the last meeting, rejecting the government’s initial N48,000 offer as being too low. The labor unions had previously demanded a minimum wage of N615,000, arguing that this amount was necessary to cater for the needs of an average Nigerian family of six amid the current economic challenges.

 

While it is unclear whether the labor unions will accept the government’s new offer of N54,000, the NLC President, Joe Ajaero, has criticized the government’s proposal, describing it as an “insult to the sensibilities of Nigerian workers” and falling “significantly short of meeting our needs and aspirations.”

 

Ajaero also accused the government of failing to provide substantive data to support its offer, which he said undermines the credibility of the negotiation process and erodes trust between the parties involved.

 

On the other hand, the Director-General of the Nigeria Employers Consultative Association (NECA), Mr. Adewale-Smatt Oyerinde, has described the labor unions’ walkout as “unfortunate,” urging them to reconsider their position and return to the negotiation table in the interest of their members and national development.

 

The Tripartite Committee on Minimum Wage, which was inaugurated by President Tinubu in January 2024, is tasked with recommending a new national minimum wage ahead of the expiration of the current N30,000 wage on April 18. The panel, which includes representatives from the federal and state governments, the private sector, and organized labor, is expected to submit its report soon.

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