The Nigeria Labour Congress (NLC) faction led by Joe Ajaero has condemned the N56,000 minimum wage sent to the Presidency, insisting that it does not commensurate with the current economic demands.
This is even as he noted that N90,000 should be the present National Minimum Living wage earned by Nigerian workers.
Speaking in Lagos at the May Day celebration organised by the faction, tagged, “Inclusive Socio- Economic Space for Sustainable Development”, Ajaero said that the NLC under his leadership took exception to N56,000 minimum wage as proposed by the other faction, but rather need N90,000 National Minimum Living wage, considering the harsh economic situation in our country.
“We are worried that the nation’s economy has become a basket-case. It is seriously sick lacking coherence amongst its various sectors robbing it of the capacity to respond to the usual economic remedies. Major macro-economic indices have increasingly nose-dived and this as many has claimed is based on the state of Oil prices in the international market, a product which our economy has unfortunately become completely welded to”, Ajaero said.
Ajaero stressed that global oil prices may have been a contributory condition to the worsening economic hardship, but it is not a contingent or necessary condition.
He went on: ” The singular most virulent factor is the refusal of our leaders to wean themselves from the apron-strings of the dictates of neoliberalism.
The philosophy behind the marketist principles of Privatisation, Liberalisation and Commercialisation is wicked and callous directed against the poor people of Nigeria and totally incapable of driving the economy out of underdevelopment. ”
The labour leader stressed that privatisation of the commanding heights of the nation’s economy especially the Power sector and other Utilities has allowed unscrupulous individuals with questionable wealth to hijack Nigerian collective patrimony setting up toll booths in front of Electricity and former public companies which they use to collect rents for themselves and continue the mindless effort at wealth extraction from the people rather than creating wealth which is fundamental for national growth.
He said, “As a nation, we cannot be seriously thinking of economic development when we allow our domestic manufacturing capacity to continue declining. We cannot move forward as a nation when instead of producing more products internally, we allow the existing ones to fold up and walk away. We cannot make progress when our tastes are heavily foreign.”
Sent from my BlackBerry 10 smartphone.