Organised Labour has expressed dissatisfaction with the slow pace of implementation of the Memorandum of Understanding it signed with the Federal Government to avert its planned nationwide strike.
The state chapters of the Nigeria Labour Congress and the Trade Union Congress said failure to implement the agreement before the October 30 deadline might leave them with no choice but to down tools, noting that they had commenced mobilisation of their members across the country.
Asked on Tuesday whether Labour was satisfied with the implementation of the MoU, the Head of Information and Public Affairs of the NLC, Benson Upah, said, “No, we are not. The government could do better and faster. We issued a statement a few days ago in which we expressed our displeasure with the Minister of Labour and Employment.”
The national leadership of the NLC and TUC had on October 1 reached an agreement with the Federal Government to pay N35,000 to all federal workers beginning from September pending when a new national minimum wage would be signed into law.
The resolution provided that the wage award would be paid to the federal workers for six months while states were encouraged to extend the same benefit to their workers.
The unions had threatened to declare a nationwide strike on October 3 but the move was suspended on the condition that the wage award, cash transfer, and some other resolutions must be implemented within 30 days effective from the day the MoU was signed.
A report said out of the 15 demands contained in the MoU, only a handful had been implemented by the government.
The Federal Government had ordered the payment of the N35,000 wage award and provision was being made for 55,000 Compressed Natural Gas conversion kits to kick-start the autogas conversion programme, while work had reportedly commenced on the construction of the state-of-the-art CNG stations nationwide, among others.
However, the Ogun State TUC Chairman, Akeem Lasisi, said that the union might be forced to declare an industrial action after the October 30 deadline if the federal and state governments failed to implement the terms of the resolutions agreed with the organised Labour.
The decision to go on strike, he explained, would depend on the outcome of the consultation meetings with other organs of the union as well as a review of the government’s efforts taken to fulfil its side of the bargain.
Speaking with the newsmen on Tuesday, the TUC chairman said the Implementation of most of the agreements lies on the table of the Federal Government. The only one that is critical for the state and local government is the payment of the wage award.