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​Following a recent 30-man committee set up by the Federal Government, to review the minimum wage so as to reflect the current economic realities, workers are now blowing hot.
Organised Labour said in Lagos, yesterday, that the any governor who owes workers’ salaries should not expect their votes in 2019.
They promised to scrutinize those who would present themselves for governorship positions in 2019 as well as determine their competencies before voting for them.
This was made known, yesterday, by the General Secretary of Textile Union Workers, Isa Aremu, who insisted that the 2019 election would be determined by dignity of labour and commitment to payment of workers’ salary.
In an interview with the News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) in Lagos, in response to the government’s plan to raise workers’ salary, by the newly-inaugurated committee, Aremu said governors who refuse to pay workers’ salaries when due and those who criminalise workers, on account of deficiency in skills, would not get workers’ votes.
He added that labour would be partisan and political in its interest, based on those who pay salaries.
“Dignity of labour will not be ensured if workers are not paid when due. Workers have the right to employment,” he added.

The general secretary said labour would conduct competence test for governors with a view to judging them based on their indices.
“It will involve skills like: ‘do you pay workers when due; Do you engage workers in social dialogue or in dictatorship policies? among others,” Aremu said.
He noted that for the country to properly recover from recession, workers’ salary must be increased amnd advised the 30-member minimum wage committee inaugurated by President Muhammadu Buhari, earlier in the week, not to spend more than six months to dialogue as time has already gone by.
Since March 28, 2015, when the All Progressives Congress, (APC) displaced the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) many state governors have owed workers’ salaries and allowances for many months.
The development forced the Federal Government to release Paris Club Debt refunds to states, to enable them clear arrears of workers’ salaries.
On Monday, November 27, president Buhari instructed the Ministry of Finance to release 50 percent balance of the Paris Club refund to the states, to enable them to clear salary arrears before Christmas.
On Tuesday, governors said the Christmas deadline to clear salaries may not be feasible
But, the governors are still saying that they would not be able to do that even with the latest fund which is about to be released to them.
To this end, the labour leader has declared that labour would be partisan and political in its interest, based on those who paid salary.
“Dignity of labour will not be ensured if workers are not paid when due. Workers have the right to employment,” he added.
The general secretary said labour would conduct competence test for governors with a view to judging them based on their indices. Such test will involve skills like: ‘do you pay workers when due? Do you engage workers in social dialogue or in dictatorship policies? And several other issues,” Aremu said.
He noted that for the country to properly recover from recession, workers’ salaries must be increased.
He advised the 30-member minimum wage committee inaugurated by the president not to spend more than six months to dialogue as lots of time had already gone by.
NAN
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