The president of the Nigerian Labor Congress (NLC), Comrade Ayuba Wabba, has criticized the governor of Kaduna state, Nasir El-Rufai, for describing the workers as a “micro minority”.
While appearing as a guest on Channels TV’s Sunrise Daily, Wabba accused governors of paying illegitimate salaries to political appointees.
El-Rufai, had revealed a plan to fire some public servants in the state for tax reasons.
“The public service of the state with fewer than 100,000 employees and their families) cannot consume more than 90 percent of government resources, leaving little to positively impact the lives of the more than nine million who are not political appointments or public officials. .
“It is a great injustice that such a small minority consumes the majority of the State’s resources,” the governor said in a statement announcing his intention.
In reaction, Wabba said El-Rufai’s comment was a disregard for the workers’ efforts to ensure the smooth running of his administration.
He regretted that El-Rufai made such a comment despite the efforts of healthcare workers to curb the spread of COVID-19 in the country.
“The incumbents of political officials do not win based on their ability to pay. But when it comes to workers, he now says they have no ability to pay. The government must lead for other labor employers to follow. The government must see itself as the representative of the people.
“The main purpose of a government is the safety and well-being of the people.
“How can it be said that our military, doctors, nurses and other public service providers are a small minority? That is the kind of thinking of a governor. How many politicians do we have and we see how much they are consuming.
“If you put it next to each other, what the workers earn is legitimate. What political officials earn is illegitimate. “
The union leader also clarified that current wages cannot cover the cost of living in Nigeria.
“A bag of rice today costs N30,000. If you have a family of eight, in a month, you cannot eat rice, you must pay the rent. When you look at the cost of living index, it is clear that it is not something that can sustain a worker. Even the daily pay is now N2,000 per day and when we put it together it is N60,000
“However, in a structured economy like Nigeria, we find ourselves in a very sorry situation. The situation continues to degenerate.
“Let’s remember that Shagari’s first minimum wage in 1981 was more than $ 125. Today, it is no more than $ 60 due to the dwindling fortunes of our economy.
“Those who are not paying certainly do not have good intentions for Nigeria and our system.”