Awka - Nigerian workers have threatened to resist the removal of minimum
wage from the exclusive list to concurrent list in the new constitution
by the National Assembly.
Dr Ayuba Wabba, President of the Medical and Health Workers’ Union of
Nigeria (MHWUN) made this known in an interview with the News Agency of
Nigeria (NAN) in Awka on Sunday.
He said the Senate had tinkered with the provision in the
constitution amendment in contravention of the International Labour
Organisation’s (ILO’s) convention in dealing with minimum wage, freedom
of association and collective bargaining.
He said that already, the Trade Union Congress (TUC) and Nigeria
Labour Congress (NLC) had petitioned President Goodluck Jonathan on the
He said they had also petitioned the Senate and House of
Representatives that the organised labour would do everything within its
power to mobilise Nigerian workers to resist such exploitative
"You are aware that before now, the 1979, 1999 constitutions and all
previous constitutions have captured minimum wage under the exclusive
"This was taking into cognisance that there is an ILO convention dealing with it,’’ he said.
Wabba commended the House of Representatives for not considering the
amendment, and seeing reasons that it was a direct contravention of ILO
convention, which Nigeria is a signatory.
He said that it was only the senate that had tinkered with the
provision, taking the powers and giving it to the State Houses of
Assembly to make laws on general wage.
He described the proposal as "a call for chaos’’.
"The organised labour in its entirety will resist any attempt to remove minimum wage from the exclusive list.
"Any constitutional amendment on it must take into cognisance the yearnings and aspirations of the workers.
"We went to the collation from local governments to the constituency levels, those issues were never canvassed.
"All the states we have visited there was no voting for the removal
of minimum wage from the exclusive list, the report is there at the
national assembly,’’ Wabba said.