The Nigeria Labour Congress (NLC) and the Trade Union Congress (TUC) have decided to postpone their planned industrial action scheduled for October 3rd, 2023, for a period of 30 days. This decision was reached following a five-hour closed-door meeting, during which the union leaders and government representatives reached several key agreements.
Here are the main points of the agreement:
1. In response to the removal of the subsidy on Premium Motor Spirit (PMS) by the Federal Government and the subsequent increase in its price, the NLC and TUC had issued a strike notice. However, this strike, originally set to begin on October 3rd, has been averted.
2. The Federal Government has agreed to implement a wage increase of N35,000 for all Federal Government workers starting from September, pending the enactment of a new national minimum wage.
3. Within one month from the agreement date, a minimum wage committee will be established.
4. The Federal Government will suspend the collection of Value Added Tax (VAT) on Diesel for a period of six months, starting from October 2023.
5. The government will allocate N100 billion for the acquisition of high-capacity CNG buses for mass transit in Nigeria, including the distribution of 55,000 CNG conversion kits and the establishment of state-of-the-art CNG stations nationwide, set to begin in November.
6. Tax incentive measures will be introduced for both the private sector and the general public.
7. Labor matters involving the NURTW and RTEAN will be addressed in accordance with relevant ILO Conventions and Nigerian Labor Acts, with a resolution expected by or before October 13.
8. Outstanding salaries and wages of tertiary education workers in Federal-owned educational institutions will be referred to the Ministry of Labour and Employment for further discussions.
9. The Federal Government will provide a monthly payment of N25,000 for three months, starting from October 2023, to 15 million households, including vulnerable pensioners.
10. The government will enhance subsidized fertilizer distribution to farmers nationwide.
11. State governments, through the National Economic Council and Governors Forum, will be encouraged to implement wage awards for their workers, including local government and private sector employees.
12. The Federal Government will allocate funds for Micro and Small Scale Enterprises as announced by the President on August 1st, 2023, with a focus on creating decent jobs.
13. A joint inspection of refineries will be conducted to assess their rehabilitation status.
14. All parties commit to adhering to the principles of social dialogue in future engagements.
15. The NLC and TUC have agreed to suspend their planned indefinite nationwide strike for a period of 30 days, starting from October 3rd, 2023. This agreement will be filed with the relevant court as a consent judgment by the Federal Government.
The agreement was signed by government officials, including the Minister of Labour and Employment, the Minister of Information and National Orientation, and the Minister of State for Labour and Employment, as well as the President and Secretary-General of the NLC and TUC on behalf of the unions.