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FG assures labour of full implementation of agreement

Labour

By Ukpono Ukpong

The federal government has assured the Nigeria Labour Congress (NLC) and Trade Union Congress (TUC) of its unwavering commitment to the full implementation of all agreements reached with them.

Minister of State for Labour and Employment, Nkeiruka Onyejeocha, gave the assurance yesterday at a media conference she convened to address the 14-day ultimatum that the two congresses had given the federal government to implement the 16-point agreement reached with them on 2nd October, 2023.

She emphasised that government had no intention of reneging on the contents of the Memorandum of Understanding (MOU) signed with the two labour organisations, and urged them to continue demonstrating restraint in their decisions and actions as the government keep working to address the challenges currently faced by the nation.

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The Minister said that government would continue leveraging on “the principles of social dialogue, valuing the input of our social partners, with the goal of creating a better Nigeria for all.”

According to Onyejeocha, “We wish to reassure Nigerians that this government is fully committed to honouring its obligations to workers and the less privileged in Nigeria.

“We will ensure the complete implementation of the Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) we entered into with Organized Labour. Our word is our bond.

“I can confidently say that President Bola Ahmed Tinubu’s administration stands firmly with the people, and the President is tirelessly working to ensure that everything is done to address the needs and concerns of the nation.”

Addressing the issues raised by the Labour organisations, Onyejeocha stated that government had already commenced delivery on its agreement with the unions, but noted that implementation of some of them are in stages, and processes are ongoing to achieve full implementation.

According to the Minister, “The N35,000 wage award agreed upon between the government and organized labour is currently being implemented. However, we have received complaints regarding non-implementation in some public sector organizations as well as the private sector. The Ministry is actively addressing these issues to ensure compliance across all sectors.”

She also disclosed that “the Office of the National Security Adviser (NSA) has intervened in the Road Transport Employers Association of Nigeria (RTEAN) matter with the Lagos State Government. As a result, up to 80% of the agreement with the RTEAN management has been fulfilled, and ongoing efforts are in place to complete the remaining process.”

She also noted that the federal government recently inaugurated a 37-member tripartite committee to recommend a new national minimum wage for Nigerian workers, “all in a bid to mitigate the hardship the Nigerian citizens are facing.”

Onyejeocha further stated that in line with ongoing commitment to improving the welfare of Nigerians, “the government is actively implementing its plan to go green with the implementation of the Presidential CNG (Compressed Natural Gas) Initiative designed to alleviate the challenges arising from subsidy removal and transition Nigeria permanently to cheaper, safer and more reliable gas produced domestically for transport.

“Provisions have also been made for an initial 55,000 CNG conversion kits as part of the commencement of the auto gas conversion programme. Development of the state-of-the-art CNG conversion centres nationwide is also ongoing with the aim to deliver one million converted bi-fuel CNG/PMS vehicles to enable transporters and mass transit operators convert their vehicles that run on PMS to gas (which is forty to fifty percent cheaper than PMS).

“Additionally, the government through the Ministry of Finance, is procuring up to 11,500 CNG vehicles, including buses and tricycles, that will be rolled out in fulfilment of the President’s promise by financing them at concessionary rate, even as production and assembly are ongoing locally and will be delivered in the next few months.”

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