The Federal Government will be coming to the meeting with organised labour today in Abuja, with the proposal for a new minimum wage that is fixed at N45, 000, following the threatened mass action against government’s increase in the price of petrol.
The proposed increase however comes with some provisos including reduction in the number of civil servants and merging ministries and agencies.
The Efficiency Unit in the Federal Ministry of Finance, which is saddled with coming up with cost reduction strategies is working on the template for the reduction.
The Federal Government would also be relying on the report of the Steve Oronsaiye’s panel on the rationalization of the civil service in the streamlining process.
Recall that, Leaders of the Nigeria Labour Congress (NLC) in alliance with their trade union counterparts, Trade Union Congress of Nigeria (TUC) as well as civil society allies had on Saturday, given the government up till midnight Tuesday to reverse the pump price to the previous N86.50 price as at Wednesday last week, or face a nationwide strike and street protests.
Expected at the meeting are all stakeholders, including leaders of NLC, TUC, Nigeria Union of Petroleum and Natural Gas Workers, NUPENG, as well as leaders of Petroleum and Natural Gas Senior State Association of Nigeria, PENGASSAN. It is slated to hold at the Federal Ministry of Labour and Employment.
Fuel scarcity persisted in most of the major cities of the country yesterday despite hopes that petrol would be available since government at the last Federal Executive Council meeting raised the pump price of petrol to N145 per litre. Yet, some outlets are retailing for as high as between N150 and N175 per litre.
The meeting between the federal government and labour leaders will hopefully see a resolution of the present fuel subsidy row and a possible rethink of the strike action by labour.