Nigerian Labour Congress (NLC) President Abduwaheed Omar has advised the Federal Government to shun any attempt to review the new National Minimum Wage Act.
Speaking in Ilorin at the 7th National Labour Relations Summit of the Michael Imoudu National Institute for Labour Studies (MINILS), Omar warned that the union would resist any attempt to review the Act.
Omar alleged that there was an unconfirmed report that state governors were pushing for the review of the law.
He expressed the fear that any such amendment would lead to the end of the Act.
Omar said that the alleged plan to amend the Act was obnoxious and not what the government should consider at all.
He argued that fixing of the minimum wage was not done merely for the sake ofÂ fixing but to ensure protection of the workersâ€™ wage.
He said if there was no nationally binding law on the minimum wage it would give the state governments the leeway to execute a wage policy that suited their interest but detrimental to the interest of their employees.
â€œI call on the Federal Government to, as a matter of urgency, forget about the issue of amending the minimum wage law. If there is a process in the implementation of the law that needed correction let us correct the process.
â€œThe essence of the law is to ensure the protection of the workers on their wage so that they are not denied their due wage. We should try to sustain this,â€ he declared.
The Ondo State Governor, Mr. Olusegun Mimiko who was at the ceremony as the chairman of the occasion in his reaction, said that governors had yet to take a position on the issue.
Mimiko explained that the governors were of the opinion that the Act as enacted and made binding on the states was offensive to the principle of federalism.
He said that the governors were not against fixing a benchmark as minimum wage payable to the workers.
According to him, the government of the states which are their employers should have the opportunity of negotiating the agreement with their workers.