As the national minimum wage crisis rages in the country, the Bayelsa State Government has assured its civil servants of the government’s willingness to pay the new minimum wage of N30,000.
The state’s Head of Civil Service, Mr Wellington Obiri, made the promise when the leaders of the state’s Nigeria Labour Congress and the Trade Union Congress led a peaceful protest to the Government House, Yenagoa, on Tuesday.
Obiri, while addressing the workers’ leaders, said, “I want to assure Bayelsa workers that government is in support of your quest for minimum wage. The N30,000 minimum wage will be implemented by the state government.
“In anticipation of that, Governor Seriake Dickson has directed the Head of Service and the Finance Committee to start working out the modalities for the implementation of whatever decision that is agreed and such a decision will be adhered to by the government.”
The state government’s assurance came just as the organised labour in Bayelsa said on Tuesday that they would not fold their arms and watch government treat colleagues as animals.
The Chairman of the NLC in the state, Mr John Bipre-Ndiomu, said the whole essence of the protest was to ensure that workers were treated fairly and the N30,000 minimum wage that was agreed by the National Tripartite Wages Nomination Committee was implemented to the letter.
Ndiomu said, “We have come to inform our state government that we are also waiting on them and that immediately the Federal Government gives approval, we are assured that the states will follow suit.
“We will ensure that, that which is due to workers gets to them. We can never be slaves in our own land. We produce the wealth of this country and others share the wealth.”
The TUC Chairman, Mr Tari Daunana, called on leaders to manage the country’s resources well in order to add value to Nigerian workers.
He said, “We want to call on our privileged leaders that are managing our resources to to add value to Nigerians and the society.
“Leadership is about the legacy you leave for the unborn generations. It will speak for you whether good or bad.
“Always activate laws that will suit Nigerian workers and we will always uphold our constitutional rights. We call on our leaders to add value to Nigerian workers.”