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Daily Archives: January 8, 2019

Minimum Wage: NLC wants to force us to print more money, says Buhari

President Muhammadu Buhari says the Nigerian Labour Congress (NLC) wants to force his government to print more money to meet their demands.

Speaking in an interview with Arise TV, the president asked the NLC how they expect his government and state governors to get N30,000 minimum wage, considering the struggle to pay N18,000.

“I have just mentioned how much this country was earning between 1999 and 2014, but there are states that were not paying salaries,” Buhari said.

“We had to do what you call bailout twice and then paid Paris Club and whatever it is, up till now there are states that for six months are not paying one kobo.

“So when the recruited labour wanted salaries to be increased, I had to relapse into my culture, Hausa culture, and told them about a mad woman; she went to make firewood, she made firewood, she tied it, once she couldn’t carry it because it was too heavy, she increased it instead of reducing.

“When they can’t pay the basic salary of N18,000 per month, they say it should go to N30,000. My budget presentation was no secret, I read it all out. Where do we get the money?

“Do we print more currency? If you do it, you cannot control inflation, but if we have to stay in government, they would force us to print more money, let everybody be a millionaire.”

The president said he needs the sympathy of the elite to take an in-depth study of our economic problem.

“God has certainly blessed this country, we are rich in people, we are rich in resources, but we have a problem of performance, time factor.

“We have to quickly exploit our resources, we have started with agriculture, we hope we would make progress with solid minerals as much as we made with agriculture, and then stabilise the oil sector.

“But really, we have to do the infrastructure, because I firmly believe if we do the infrastructure; the roads, the rail, the power, Nigerians will mind their own businesses, but how much will it take?”

The federal government has, however, said the national minimum wage bill will be transmitted to the national assemblyon or before January 23.

Journalists shot, MC Oluomo stabbed as ‘thugs’ disrupt Lagos APC rally

Violence erupted on Tuesday as suspected political thugs disrupted the governorship campaign rally of the All Progressives Congress (APC) in Lagos.

Several people were injured in the violence, including three journalists who sustained bullet wounds.

The hoodlums, said to be members of the National Union Road Transport Workers (NURTW), invaded the Skypower Ground Ikeja venue of the campaign with guns, daggers and other dangerous weapons.

Musiliu Akinsanya, a strong member of the party and NURTW leader popularly known as MC Oluomo, was reportedly stabbed by rival factions of the party.

He is currently on admission in a hospital.

The violence broke out mid-way into the programme, cutting short the event as the hoodlums were said to have shot sporadically in different directions, engaging each other in a fight.

Members of the party scampered for safety to avoid being hit by bullets being fired indiscriminately by the hoodlums, while security operatives tried to control the situation.

Akinwunmi Ambode, governor of Lagos; Idiat Adebule, his deputy; Babajide Sanwoolu, the APC governorship candidate in the state, and other prominent members of the party were escorted out of the venue.

Buhari releases N15.4bn as ASUU, FG finally reach an agreement

The Academic Staff  Union of Universities and the federal government reached the agreement on Monday, after a two-hour meeting in Abuja.

The government agreed to release N15.4 billion in salary shortfall for the University teachers.

The union is expected to call off its indefinite strike action any time from now.

Chris Ngige, the minister of labour and employment, who disclosed the news of the agreement said President Muhammadu Buhari has released N15.4 billion to cover the shortfalls in public universities.

According to him, the accountant general and the ministry of finance have confirmed the release of the funds.

He said President Buhari has approved N20 billion for settling outstanding arrears from 2009 to 2012 due to the universities.

The staff union has been on strike action for two months running.

Biodun Ogunyemi, a professor and the ASUU national chairman, said the union will meet and decide if the concession by the government is enough to call of the strike or not.

The final decision of the striking lecturers will be communicated to the public after the said meeting.