House of Representatives Seeks to Avert Minimum Wage Strike Through Dialogue with Labour Unions

In a bid to resolve the ongoing controversy surrounding the agitation for a new minimum wage, the House of Representatives has decided to meet with representatives of the Nigeria Labour Congress (NLC). This move aims to convince the labour unions to shelve their planned strike action, which was slated to commence on May 31.

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The Deputy Speaker, Benjamin Kalu, who presided over the plenary session in the absence of Speaker Abbas Tajudeen, assured Nigerians that the meeting with the labour unions would help find a resolution to the minimum wage dispute.

The House’s decision came after the adoption of a motion on a matter of personal explanation, moved by Kelechi Nwogu, the member representing Etche/Omuma Federal Constituency of Rivers State. Nwogu reminded his colleagues that the organized labour had announced plans to embark on a strike, citing the ongoing disagreement with the Federal Government over the approval of a new minimum wage.

Nwogu noted that the House had previously, on March 16, adopted a motion on the need for a new minimum wage. However, he pointed out that the committee set up to propose a living wage for Nigerian workers had yet to report back to the House, contrary to the provisions of the House Standing Order, which mandate committees to complete their assignments within 30 days, unless an extension is granted.

The minority leader, Kingsley Chinda, urged the House to act swiftly to prevent the labour strike from taking place, emphasizing the need for a proactive approach to address the issue.

The House’s resolution to meet with the labour unions underscores the legislature’s commitment to finding a mutually acceptable solution to the minimum wage dispute, with the aim of avoiding the disruption that a labour strike could cause.

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