Laide Raheem, Abeokuta
Organised Labour in Ogun State has directed workers in local governments and civil/public services to proceed on a two-day warning strike over “inaction of the state government on the implementation of the new national minimum wage”.
This directive was contained in a communique issued at the end of an emergency meeting of the labour force, held on Monday in Abeokuta, Ogun State capital.
The communique was jointly signed by the state chairman of Trade Union Congress (TUC), Fajobi Olubunmi, his Nigeria Labour Congress (NLC) counterpart, Bankole Emmanuel, chairman of the Joint Negotiating Council (JNC), Folorunso Olanrewaju and the Coordinating Secretary, Adebiyi Olusegun.
Reading the communique shortly after the meeting at the Ogun NLC Secretariat, the NLC chairman, Emmanuel, said the call for the warning strike scheduled to hold on Thursday and Friday, had become imperative in the face of the state government’s failure to open negotiation on the implementation of the new national minimum wage.
He disclosed that five letters had been written by the organised labour between August and December to the state government, calling for the setting up of negotiation committee, but the government neither acknowledged nor invited labour leaders for any meeting.
Emmanuel, who said organised labour have been treated to “menus of deceits and apparent misinformation” by the state government, faulted a statement credited to the Secretary to the State Government that state government was already in talks with the organised labour and that the new wage had been factored into the 2020 appropriation bill saying “there was never consultation with the labour prior the wage projection in the said budget, whilst the other statement is false and misleading”.
The communique reads in part: “The Organised Labour has demonstrated maturity of perseverance and respect to the Rule of Law. It has come to the turn of the states that comply with the new national minimum wage by simply setting up negotiation comment that will address itself particularly to determining the consequential adjustments of the newly signed wage law. It is distressing to note that the Ogun State government has elected to deliberately ignore our letters and various calls for the constitution of the negotiation committee.
“In view of the directive of the Federal Government that negotiations must had been concluded by 31st December, 2019 across the federation vis-a-vis the foot dragging of the Ogun State government and having exhausted laid down procedures, we therefore direct workers in the state local governments and civil/public services to proceed on two day warning strike on Thursday, 19th and Friday, 20th December, 2019, to press home our demand”.
Meanwhile, in a Notice of Strike Action written to the state governor, Dapo Abiodun, the Organised Labour, said its members would embark on indefinite strike on January 2, if the government fails to accede to their demands.