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Increasing minimum wage won’t worsen inflation, says TUC president

Increasing minimum wage won’t worsen inflation, says TUC president
May 01
11:15 2024

Festus Osifo, president of the Trade Union Congress (TUC), says increasing the minimum wage for civil servants will not worsen inflation.

Osifo said this on ‘Morning Brief’, a Channels Television programme, on Wednesday.

He added that there is ample justification for an increase in the minimum wage given increased revenue allocation to states since May 2023.

The TUC president said organised labour has proposed N615,000 as the new minimum wage for workers.

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“If you look today, from May 2023 to date, revenue from the Federation Account Allocation Committee (FAAC) to the state governments has tripled,” he said.

“This means the state government has more money to build roads and schools, and to purchase other items.

“The most critical aspect of production is labour. It is for you to take part of the money and pay workers. That won’t increase inflation because the money will be spent anyway; if you don’t give it to workers, it will be spent on other projects.

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“Giving workers what is due them won’t necessarily worsen inflation.”

Osifo’s remarks comes amid the economic hardship confronting millions of Nigerians due to the removal of subsidy on petrol and unification of the exchange rate windows.

On April 26, Osifo stated that organised labour’s expectation that the federal government will announce a new minimum wage on May 1 was unrealistic.

On April 30, the federal government approved an increase of between 25 percent and 35 percent salary increase for civil servants on the six consolidated salary structures.

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In January, the federal government set up a 37-member tripartite committee on the minimum wage.

Subsequently, organised labour submitted a demand of N615,000 as the new minimum wage for workers, and urged the government to announce the new minimum wage on Workers’ Day.

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