The Trade Union Congress, TUC, has said it will demand wage increase for workers in the New Year following the devaluation of the naira by the Central Bank of Nigeria, CBN.
The National President of the Congress, Bobboi Kaigama, disclosed this at the end of the Congress’ National Executive Council Meeting in the early hours of Sunday in Lagos.
Mr. Kaigama said the wage hike had become necessary because the current devaluation had started impacting negatively on Nigerian workers.
He added that “the issue of wage is a dynamic thing. In stabilised economies, wages are directly proportional to the inflation trend of that country.
“So, it is expected that following the devaluation of the naira and its resultant rise in inflation, salaries of workers should automatically be increased too.
“But in this country, even after devaluation of the currency, there will not be any increase in workers’ salary and that is bad.
“The moment devaluation is put in place the prices of goods and services surge, there should be a proportional increase in the workers’ pay.”
He, therefore, said “if the issue on devaluation persist, the Congress will have no option but to enter the New Year with a demand for increase in workers’ pay.’’
The TUC boss added that the fall in crude oil price in the international market should be translated into a fall in the price of refined products in the country.
Mr. Kaigama explained that the price of petrol should be brought down to N50 per litre.
“If government says that the price of crude oil has fallen in the global market, it means that the price of products will also fall in the country.
“If truly we are working with the dynamics of market principles, we expect that the price of products should drop.
“We want N50 per litre for oil,’’ he said.
The union leader said that the delay in the passage of the Petroleum Industry Bill on the floor of the National Assembly would push unions and Nigerians to the wall for a corresponding action.