President of Nigeria Labour Congress (NLC), Dr. Ayuba Wabba, yesterday, urged state governors to emulate Anambra Governor, Willie Obiano’s approach to the new national minimum wage.
Ayuba, who spoke in Awka at the 2019 NLC State Delegate Conference, noted that from information available to the Congress, Obiano would be the first governor to pay the new minimum wage.
Speaking through Chris Ani, who represented him at the event, Wabba said: “Anybody who is aware of the situation regarding the minimum wage and the struggle the Congress went through, should appreciate the young man (Obiano) for his generosity, because the entire Labour force fought and had to do some rallies to actualise it.
“So, for anybody to initiate the implementation, we normally as a Labour group commend the person. We talk to people and say things as they are, if you are bad, we say you are bad, no matter who you are.
“And now that he is initiating a move to inculcate thespirit of respecting agreement into other governors, we want all of them to emulate him, so that we will have less crises across the state Councils.”
Corroborating him, the State Chairman of NLC who was re-elected for tenure, Comrade Jerry Nnubia, urged the state Governors to cut excessive cost in governance to be able to pay the minimum wage.
He said, “This is a product of negotiation and all we are looking at is for the circular coming out and every state should be able to implement. For us in Anambra state we are having that firm promise and we believe that the Governor having promised to be among the first governors to pay, I don’t we are going to have any challenge.
“My advice to the entire states and Governors is to implement because they were part and parcel of that negotiation, it is just a question of cutting cost and excesses in governance and they will pay.”
On other labour issue in the state he said, “The leadership has also articulated and forwarded all the labour issues in the state and persistently engaged the state government for amicable resolution of the issues in question. This regular engagement and agitation resulted in the Governor to look into all the labour issues presented by the congress.
“We are however not happy, that the committee having concluded its assignment and submitted its report to the Governor, nothing has happened till now. I therefore charge the in-coming leadership of the congress to take up the challenge of ensuring that all the outstanding labour issues in the state is vigorously pursued to its logical conclusion.”
The Deputy Governor, Dr. Nkem Okeke who represented the Governor at the event assured the workers of the state government willingness to pay the minimum wage as soon as the circular was out.
He disclosed that the report of the Committee was ready but was waiting for finance and assured them that the Governor was ready to continue the cordial relationship with Labour in the state.