By Gabriel Yough
Jalingo – The Joint Public Service Negotiating Council in Taraba on Wednesday gave the State Government a seven-day ultimatum to sign the N30,000 minimum wage agreement or face industrial action.
The Chairman of the council, Mr Wilfred Kwanchi, gave the ultimatum in Jalingo while addressing newsmen on the plight of workers in the state.
Kwanchi decried the inability of the state government to implement the N30, 000 national minimum wage as agreed between it and labour, accusing the government of insensitivity to the plight of workers in the state.
He demanded for the implementation of the minimum wage in the September salaries, threatening that workers would embark on strike if the government failed to implement the new wage.
“The minimum wage of 30, 000 was signed into law in Nigeria on April 8, 2019 and the law allowed states to negotiate and pay the minimum wage based on their ability and capacity.
“In Taraba State, mandate was obtained, negotiations commenced and concluded on March 3, 2020 and the report presented to the Governor for consideration and further directive.
“Government requested for a grace of three months to implement the negotiated minimum wage in the state in view of the ravaging effects of Coronavirus on the global economy which Taraba state was not immuned from.
“Five months down the line, there is no indication by government to sign the agreement, let alone implement its content.
“We, therefore, demand the immediate signing of the agreement within seven days and implementation of same in the September salaries, beyond which we will embark on industrial action,” he warned.
In a swift reaction, Special Adviser to the State Governor on Media and Publicity, Mr Bala Dan-Abu, pleaded with the council not to embark on strike, saying that negotiations were ongoing.