All employers must pay minimum wage – Ngige

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Abuja, Dec. 23, 2023 – Dr Chris Ngige, the Minister of Labour and Employment, says all employers of labour in the country are bound to comply with the Minimum Wage Act by paying the N30,000 minimum wage.

Ngige, who spoke at a public enlightenment and sensitisation workshop for field officers on the national minimum wage in Abuja on Thursday, said all establishments were bound by the Act because they were duly represented in the negotiations.

“The formal and informal sectors were represented during the collective bargaining mechanisms that produced the Act and no establishment could claim ignorance or non-involvement in reaching the collective bargaining agreement on the minimum wage.

“Ensuring compliance with the National Minimum Wage Act would ensure that workers were not short-changed.

“A satisfied worker would contribute effectively and efficiently to the sustainability and growth of an enterprise. This will in turn contribute to national development and less disruptions in productivity, occasioned by industrial actions.

“There is an urgent need, therefore, to ensure a minimum living wage to all employed and in need of such protection and attain a just and equitable share of the fruits of progress,” he aid

Ngige said the training was critical to implementing the mandate of the ministry and the NSIWC.

He said that Section 12 of the Act on “Monitoring and Compliance” indicated that the Ministry would collaborate with NSIWC to monitor implementation of the national minimum wage.

“It is also their responsibility to keep social partners informed of the process to address any identified non-compliance with provisions of the act.

“The workshop is meant to enlighten and sensitise stakeholders who are statutorily assigned the duty of monitoring and ensuring compliance.

“I hope you will be drilled thoroughly in the art of interaction with capital and labour and the inherent dialectics between the factors of production to protect rights at work.

 “I also hope that at the end of the workshop, you will be knowledgeable of the act and adequately arm yourselves in execution of your monitoring and enforcement duties,” he said.

The NSIWC Chairman, Mr Ekpo Nta, said the commission was determined to implement its mandate to the letter, particularly in the area of salaries and wages.

The Chairman, who was represented by the NSIWC Commissioner, Dr Mojisola Kolade, said the commission would go all out to address the problem of wage theft.

“The commission will ensure that people are not short-changed when it comes to salaries and wages. We want the money to be given to the right persons,” he said. (GBN)

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