Naira Scarcity: Insight On Meeting Between FG, NLC And CBN Suffices
The details of the meeting between the Federal Government, the Nigeria Labour Congress ( NLC), and the Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN) have sufficed.
Recall that the CBN delegation led by its governor, Godwin Emefiele and the NLC leadership led by its President, Comrade Joe Ajaeo, met with the Minister of Labour and Employment, Chris Ngige, on Mondy evening, over a well thought out nationwide strike and protest.
This meeting came hours after the NLC directed all its chapters across the country to be prepared for a protest at all the branches of the CBN over the unavailability of naira that has brought untold hardship to Nigerians.
Speaking with reporters during the weekly Ministerial Briefing at the State House, Abuja, on Tuesday, Ngige said the workers union has put away its plan to shut down activities at all the branches of the CBN over naira unavailability.
Ngige said his ministry took charge of the meeting between the CBN and the NLC, stating that the apex bank had taken steps to provide solutions to the situation.
The minister said as at the moment, the issue to be discussed by NLC in its National Executive Council (NEC) meeting would no longer be issues of protest, which he said had already been apprehended.
He said, “Now they have all answered our calls because we are the Chief Conciliators. In my opening remark I said I’ve noticed that there’s already a dialogue going on and there’s also implementation and the Nigerian Labour Congress agreed that there was some thawing at the surface of the icing that was there.
“They said they will call up their National Executive Council meeting because the initial decision to give that ultimatum was given by this same Council. Members of the Council reside in the states and in the local governments, so that they will come up today, which is Tuesday, the 28th, to review the situation because much as it is, the important thing is that we have emphasised to them that we have apprehended this dispute.
“By Section 7:8 of Trade Dispute Act, once the Minister apprehends and starts conciliation on it, you maintain status quo ante bellum. So they have gone back now to review the situation. If they’re not satisfied with what they’re see, they will come back to me and I’ll invite the CBN again.
“But for now, the issue of discussion is no longer strike, the issue of discussion is implementation and how far it’s gone and how far it affects Nigerian workers and the general population.
“So that is it, the final decision will be done today by NEC and they will then do a resolution, of course, inform me and CBN what their resolution is. But like I said, we have apprehended and we are now conciliating.”
Ngige also confirmed that the issue of a pay rise for workers is being taken care of by the government, adding that the main thing now is the quantum of the salary increase. He also said that the amount to be paid will be based on the availability of funds and the ability to pay.
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