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Strike Set to End as Labour Returns to Negotiation Table

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Credit: Guardianng

In a significant breakthrough, the nationwide strike that has gripped Nigeria is expected to be suspended later today, Tuesday. This development comes as the organised labour movement has agreed to resume negotiations with the Federal Government, despite the latter’s initial stance on maintaining the N60,000 minimum wage.

The turning point occurred during a high-level meeting chaired by George Akume, Secretary to the Government of the Federation. The session, held in Abuja on Monday, was convened in response to the strike action launched by labour unions on June 3rd. The strike was a strategic move to underscore their demands following their withdrawal from the Tripartite Committee on National Minimum Wage (NMW) negotiations.

Interestingly, the National Assembly’s leadership had intervened on June 2nd, a day before the strike commenced, in an attempt to bridge the divide between the parties. However, it was President Bola Tinubu’s commitment to a minimum wage exceeding N60,000 that ultimately brought labour back to the table.

“The President is dedicated to ensuring a national minimum wage that surpasses N60,000,” affirmed a government spokesperson. This assurance has prompted labour to reconvene its internal organs, considering the President’s pledge.

As a result, the Tripartite Committee is set to engage in an intensive, week-long negotiation starting this morning in Abuja. The goal is to reach a consensus on a new national wage floor that will be acceptable to both state governments and the organised private sector.

The communique, signed by key figures including Information Minister Mohammed Idris, Labour Minister Nkeiruka Onyejeocha, NLC President Joe Ajaero, and TUC counterpart Festus Osifo, also guaranteed that no worker would face retaliation for participating in the industrial action.

As Nigeria awaits the outcome of these crucial talks, there’s a growing sense of optimism that a fair and sustainable wage agreement will soon be achieved, marking the end of this disruptive strike.