Organized labor in Nigeria has put forward a demand for a N615,000 monthly minimum wage to address the economic challenges and the high cost of living faced by workers. The Nigeria Labour Congress (NLC) President, Joe Ajaero, confirmed this development after consultations with the Trade Union Congress (TUC).

The current minimum wage of N30,000 is no longer sufficient to meet the needs of the average Nigerian worker. Some state governors have not consistently paid the existing wage, which was established by the Minimum Wage Act of 2019, signed by former President Muhammadu Buhari. This act requires periodic reviews to align with the changing economic landscape.

Both the NLC and the TUC have urged President Bola Tinubu’s administration to promptly review wage awards. In January, the Federal Government formed a 37 member Tripartite Committee on National Minimum Wage with the task of recommending a new minimum wage for the country.

Rising inflation, currently at 31.70% as of February 2024, has significantly impacted the cost of living for Nigerian workers. To address this, the unions jointly proposed a new minimum wage of N615,000. They argue that state governors can afford this increase, especially considering the improved monthly revenue allocation by the Revenue Mobilisation Allocation and Fiscal Commission (RMAFC).

As discussions continue, finding a balance between workers’ well-being and economic realities remains crucial. The proposed increase aims to alleviate financial strain and enhance the livelihoods of Nigerian workers.

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