The Nigeria Labour Congress (NLC) has directed its state councils, whose members’ salaries were not being paid as at when due to embark on strike.
General Secretary of NLC, Dr. Peter Ozo-Eson, said it was morally wrong for governors not to pay salaries of workers due to dwindling oil revenue.
He said: “We have taken a position on the non-payment of salaries by government at all level due to dwindling oil revenue. If state governors are able to set their priority right, even with what they are receiving from the federation account, they should be able to pay salary.
“That is why we directed our state councils that when salaries are not paid as at when due, they should embark on industrial action.”
Ozo-Eson said it was inhuman for governors, who had in their disposal unaccounted amount of money to spend as security votes, to suggest they couldn’t pay N18, 000 minimum wages “even when it is due for review.”
He urged the federal government to urgently constitute a tripartite framework that would lead to the review of the current minimum wage.
“We are aware that the current N18, 000 minimum wages are due for review. We want the federal government to constitute a tripartite committee to review the wage.
“However, government at all levels must set their priority within the existing revenue profile so that they can be able to meet their obligation to the citizens because they cannot continue to blame their failures on dwindling oil revenue as the reason for non-payment of salaries,” he said.
On the recent revelations of ghost workers by governments, the NLC scribe said it was unfortunate that up till this moment no one has been brought to book, arguing that an ordinary worker cannot be involved in the practice since it is the management that keeps records of all the employees.
He said: “Congress have taken position on the issue of ghost workers and by now we expect that government must have come out with the names of persons allegedly collecting salaries and how many years have they being collecting such money.
“They also need to establish who are responsible and charge them appropriately. It is not enough to say there are ghost workers, but bringing the perpetrators to book to serve as deterrent.”