NLC to Press for N250,000 Minimum Wage in Meeting with President Tinubu

The Nigeria Labour Congress (NLC) is set to push for a significant increase in the national minimum wage, proposing N250,000, during a meeting with President Bola Tinubu at the State House in Abuja today. This move comes amidst rising living costs and economic challenges faced by workers across the country.

 NLC, TUC Meet President Tinubu over national minimum wage 

NLC’s Determination for a Substantial Minimum Wage Increase

Benson Upah, the Head of Public Affairs of the NLC, confirmed the union's stance, stating, "We are going to the table with our demand of N250,000 even as the cost of living has since moved up. We have been very reasonable and patriotic." The NLC's demand highlights the urgency to address the financial hardships that workers are currently facing due to inflation and economic policies.

The meeting with President Tinubu is part of his commitment to engage in further consultations with stakeholders on the minimum wage issue. This follows his Democracy Day speech on June 12, 2024, where he assured the public that an executive bill on the new national minimum wage would be presented to the National Assembly soon.

Background and Developments Leading to the Meeting

On June 25, the Federal Executive Council (FEC), chaired by President Tinubu, postponed discussions on the new minimum wage to allow for more comprehensive engagement with stakeholders. This decision came after the President received the report from the Tripartite Committee on Minimum Wage. The report, presented by the Secretary to the Government of the Federation, George Akume, and prepared by the committee's chairman, Bukar Goni Aji, recommended a minimum wage of N62,000. This recommendation was based on inputs from federal and state governments as well as the Organised Private Sector (OPS).

However, the NLC's proposal of N250,000 starkly contrasts with the committee's recommendation, reflecting the union's assessment of the current economic realities and the impact of recent government policies on workers' livelihoods. The current minimum wage of N30,000 is deemed unrealistic by labour unions, given the inflationary pressures exacerbated by the removal of petrol subsidies and the unification of foreign exchange windows.

State Governors’ Concerns and Financial Constraints

The state governors have expressed concerns over their ability to meet even the N62,000 recommendation, highlighting the financial constraints faced by many state governments. This discrepancy has added to the complexity of the negotiations, with various parties struggling to find common ground.

Following the FEC meeting, President Tinubu and Vice President Kassim Shettima held discussions with governors and ministers at the 141st meeting of the National Economic Council to deliberate on the new minimum wage. However, the outcome of this meeting was not disclosed, leaving many stakeholders uncertain about the next steps.

The Stalemate and Its Impact on National Activities

The prolonged negotiations have led to significant tensions and industrial actions. On June 3, labour unions declared an indefinite strike, crippling economic activities and government operations nationwide. The strike affected essential services, including airports, hospitals, banks, the national grid, and legislative complexes at both national and state levels. This action underscored the unions' frustration with the slow pace of negotiations and the urgent need for a resolution.

The industrial action was eventually suspended after labour leaders met with top government officials who provided assurances that the government was willing to increase its offer. This suspension allowed for the resumption of critical services but did not resolve the underlying issues, necessitating further discussions.

Tripartite Committee and Its Role

President Tinubu established the tripartite committee in January to negotiate a new minimum wage ahead of the expiration of the Minimum Wage Act of 2019 in April 2024. The committee comprises representatives from Organised Labour, federal and state governments, and the OPS. Its mandate is to find a balanced and sustainable minimum wage that addresses the needs of workers while considering the financial capabilities of employers and government entities.

The Path Forward

As the NLC prepares for the crucial meeting with President Tinubu, the stakes are high. The union’s insistence on a N250,000 minimum wage underscores the growing economic pressures on Nigerian workers and the need for substantial changes to ensure their welfare. The outcome of this meeting will likely have significant implications for the country’s labour relations and economic stability.

The extension of the negotiation period, coupled with the government's commitment to further consultations, provides an opportunity for all parties to work towards a mutually acceptable solution. However, finding common ground will require considerable compromise and collaboration from all stakeholders involved.

The NLC's push for a higher minimum wage reflects a broader trend of rising demands for better living standards and fair compensation in response to economic challenges. As Nigeria navigates these complex issues, the role of effective dialogue and strategic policymaking will be crucial in achieving a balanced and sustainable resolution.


The meeting between the NLC and President Tinubu represents a critical juncture in Nigeria's ongoing efforts to address the minimum wage issue. The proposed N250,000 minimum wage highlights the significant economic pressures faced by workers and the need for urgent action. The outcomes of these discussions will have far-reaching implications for the country's labour market, economic stability, and overall social welfare. As stakeholders continue to engage in these important negotiations, the focus remains on finding a fair and sustainable solution that addresses the needs of all parties involved. #nlc #Tinubu #Minimum-wage #TrendingNews #Bulletin1247

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