OrderPaperToday – The public hearing by the House of Representatives ad-hoc committee on minimum wage bill which took place on Monday at the National Assembly witnessed lots of drama including booing of top government functionaries.
The hearing which attracted huge turnout from the work force and federal government representatives, commenced on a high note following remarks from the Speaker, Yakubu Dogara, Deputy Speaker who is also chairman of the ad-hoc committee, Yusuf Lasun, and others that cheered members of the organised labour union present.
But it was a different scenario when government representatives took turns to address the issues.
While introducing himself, the Minister of Labour, Employment and Productivity, Sen. Chris Ngige was booed when he shouted “great Nigeria workers!”
The booing continued when the minister tried to explain how the tripartite committee arrived at N27,000 minimum wage per month. The organised labour union in a loud voice shouted “time up!” severally in a bid to prevent him from speaking further.
Chairman of the Nigeria Governors Forum, Gov. Abdulaziz Yari of Zamfara State, also suffered a verbal raw deal from the workers who poured invective on him.
His explanation that state governors were not against the workers but were constrained to settle for N27,000 approved by the National Council of State was negatively received.
Shortly after his presentation, the workers started singing “ole ole ole” which is translated to mean ‘thief.’
The chants however changed to “N30,000 minimum wage, minimum wage N30,000” when it was the turn of the president of the Nigeria Labour Congress (NLC), Mr. Ayuba Wabba, to speak.
Mr. Wabba got a standing ovation from the workers after his speech.
Members in their various contributions supported the need for the N30,000 be made minimum wage. At the end of their various presentation, the organised labour union gave them applaud.