…Says Ministry has right to register unions
By Johnbosco Agbakwuru
Minister of Labour and Employment, Senator Chris Ngige on Wednesday appealed to the organised Labour to put into consideration the bad economic situation while negotiating for consequential adjustment.
The Minister also said that the Federal Government was determined to conclude negotiations on Consequential Adjustment to avoid having the problem of backlogs.
Senator Ngige who stated this when he received in audience the leadership of the Nigeria Labour Congress, NLC, that paid him a congratulatory visit, said that a worker deserves payment that is commensurate with his labour.
The Minister, flanked by the Minister of State for Labour, Festus Keyamo, Permanent Secretary in the ministry, Williams Alor and departmental heads also said that there should be an agreement between labour and government in arriving at the consequential adjustment.
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He said that the economy should be put into consideration in any decision to be reached and stressed the need to expedite action in order not to create problems for the government.
He told the leadership of NLC that the ministry has the right to register unions and that he would exercise the functions in accordance with the law.
According to him, “I am one of those who believe that a workman is due his wages, if you work, in a vineyard, you will eat from that vineyard, and you will eat all of the fruits that are in the vineyard.
“The issue of the national minimum wage will be sorted out for those other cadres, and I am very hopeful that it will be done as soon as possible.
” The unions of NLC and TUC have not been involved, but when we come back, we will involve you so that we can have a speedy movement in this respect.
” It is unfortunate that negotiations were deadlocked from levels 7 till 17, and issues became on what percentage or slides that they should use on the sliding scale. The bad thing is that we are going to discuss and negotiate it, it is a Collective Bargaining Arrangement (CBA) Because if we talk strictly about the minimum wage, it is already being implemented because the minimum wage is for the person on the lower rung of the ladder.