Protest: FG Has Fulfilled 90% Of Agreement With Labour — Minister

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Labour Minister Nkiruka Onyejeocha says the Federal Government has achieved about 90% of the agreement it had with the organized labour last October.

“We’ve done virtually everything in agreement. 90% of everything,” Onyejeocha said on Channels Television’s Politics Today on Tuesday.

According to her, the President of the Nigeria Labour Congress (TUC), Joe Ajaero, told government representatives at a meeting on Sunday that the protest was not about the government’s commitment to the October agreement but food inflation.

The minister said food security and economic prosperity were part of the priorities of the President Bola Tinubu administration.

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She appealed to Nigerians to be patient with the new government as the administration is in its planting season with harvest on the horizon.

Onyejeocha said the Federal Government had ticked about 90% of the 15-point memorandum of understanding it signed with the Organised Labour on October 2, 2023.

Some of the agreement include granting wage award of N35,000 to workers, inauguration of minimum wage committee, and suspension of the collection of Value Added Tax (VAT) on Diesel for six.

On the provision of high capacity CNG buses for mass transit in Nigeria, the minister said funds had been released for the purpose but “there are certain things you cannot control; you cannot control the number of days a shipment or a container will stay in the port”.

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Nigeria is battling rising inflation, food inflation, forex crisis, economic hardship and high cost of living occasioned by the removal of petrol subsidy, attracting protests in parts of the country.

The Presidency had engaged labour leaders in a last-minute talks on Monday night but the meeting ended in a stalemate as the NLC insisted that the protest was going to hold.

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Though the Trade Union Congress (TUC) said it was not part of the strike, the NLC grounded economic activities across the country on Tuesday, with labour leader Ajaero, saying that the protest was about hunger and not just a clamour for a review of the minimum wage.

Labour later suspended the protest on Tuesday night, after day one of the demonstrations, saying the objectives of the two-day protest had been achieved on the first day of the rally. (Channels)

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