The organised labour in Ekiti State has threatened to ‘greet the state government a happy new year with a protest’ and a strike in 2021 if it fails to implement the N30,000 minimum wage and the consequential adjustment across board.
The workers also demanded that the state governor, Kayode Fayemi, should pay all the promotion and salary arrears to all categories of workers as negotiated, to avert labour industrial disharmony.
They contended that shortly after the minimum wage bill was signed into law by President Muhammadu Buhari in 2018, Mr Fayemi implemented the payment to workers on grade levels 01 to 06, promising to effect it across board when the finances of the state improve.
The labour unions reached the decision to protest at a meeting on Tuesday.
A communique conveying the notice was signed by the Chairmen of Nigerian Labour Congress, Kolapo Olatunde; Trade Union Congress, Sola Adigun and Joint Negotiating Committee, Kayode Fatomiluyi.
The labour unions said they reached a compromise on the implementation with the government before a strange formula was allegedly introduced to stall the process.
The unions demanded that the agreed new minimum wage and consequential adjustment table “should be sustained without any concession.”
“That the new minimum wage and consequential adjustment implementation should commence for payment in January 2021 with the accruable arrears from April 2020,” the unions further demanded.
“That all arrears of promotions for years 2017, 2018 and 2019; arrears of leave bonuses for years 2016, 2017,2018,2019 and 2020 as well as 6 years for local governments, subvented institutions and four years for state workers salary arrears and deductions should be paid in earnest.
“That the organized labour should with immediate effect report to the enlarged workers at the State Secretariat complex to allow adequate information to the generality of (the) workforce.
“That failure on the part of the state government to implement the new minimum wage and consequential adjustment as negotiated, as well as various outstanding arrears, the organized labour should mobilise workers for peaceful protest in the first week of January, 2021.”
But the Chief Press Secretary to the Governor, Olayinka Oyebode, said the consequential adjustment being demanded by the labour had been a matter on the table of discussion between the government and labour and would be resolved as soon as resources were available.
He said the minimum wage had been implemented according to the law signed by the President, but the adjustments would be considered based on the capability of the government to pay.
According to Mr Oyebode, there was a recent meeting between government and labour on the matter, hoping that reason would prevail between now and when the workers proposed to go on strike.
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