The Nigerian Labour Congress (NLC) has called on state governments owing pensioners arrears to pay them as soon as possible to reduce their hardship.
NLC National President Comrade Ayuba Wabba made the call on Thursday in Kano during NLC state delegates’ conference.
Wabba, who was represented by his deputy, Alhaji Nasiru Dangwandu, said that the call was necessary because some state governors had failed to pay retirees their entitlements.
He commended the Kano Government for paying workers’ salaries and pensioners.
The NLC president said that it would be a testimony to good governance if governors would ensure immediate payment of such arrears to beneficiaries.
Wabba applauded President Mohammad Buhari’s commitment to improving the welfare of workers when he assented to the new menimum wage bill 2019.
Buhari had signed into law the Minimum Wage Repeal and Re-Enactment Act, 2019 on April 18, an action that has now made the new minimum wage N30,000.
Following his assent to the bill, the President mandated all employers of labour nationwide to pay workers a minimum of N30,000 monthly wage.
The National Assembly had submitted the minimum wage bill to the President on March 27.
The bill approving N30,000 as the new national minimum wage was passed by both chambers of National Asaembly before they went on break for the 2019 general elections.
According to Wabba, NLC is committed to improving the welfare of Nigerian workers.
He, therefore, pledged that NLC would redouble its efforts toward achieving the objective.
“But we completely rejected the proposed increase of Value Added Tax (VAT) as a means of funding the 2019 budget.
“We warned that any increase in the VAT or PAYE would not only rob workers of the minimal relief from the increase in the minimum wage, but would also leave our economy in dire straits,” he said.
He urged the government to consider other progressive ways of financing the budget.
H further urged the government should adopt progressive taxation in a manner that captures more people in the tax net and also ensure that the rich and luxury items are properly taxed.
He also called on all employer of labour to commence payment of the new minimum wage with immediate effect, aimed at achieving the stated objectives
In a remark the state chairman of the NLC in Kano, Comrade Kabir Minjibir said the union had recorded tremendous success in recent times in an effort to ensure welfare and rights of workers.
He said that NLC in Kano was able to intervene and ensure the payment of outstanding salaries arrears for workers at Kano state primary health Care Management board, secondary school teachers and cooperate security guards employed by Kano state government among others.
Also speaking, the Representative of Gov. Abdullahi Ganduje, the State’s Head of Service Alhaji Auwal Na-iya said their administration is a labour friendly especially with regards to the sustenance of monthly payment of salaries since assumption to office in May 2015 despite the economic challenges.
He maintained that his administration had also abolished the HND and Bsc dichotomy, which was aimed at boosting the morale of civil servants in the state for effective service delivery.
The delegates were expected at the end of the conference elect new leaders that would take the affairs of the union for the next tenure.