The Socialist Party of Nigeria, SPN gubernatorial candidate in Oyo State, Comrade Abiodun Bamigboye, has declared solidarity with Nigeria workers as they organise a nationwide protest today, Tuesday 8 January, 2019 to commence a mobilisation and sensitisation of the Nigeria working people towards a full blown strike to protest against the continuous refusal of the President Buhari/APC-led administration to transmit to the national assembly the proposed figure of N30,000 as a new minimum wage which the tripartite committee on minimum wage was recently forced to signed and submitted to the President Buhari.
Bamigboye in press statement signed by the SPN head of media committee and made available to journalist in Ibadan insists that the continuous refusal by President Buhari to transmit the proposed new minimum wage to the national assembly for it to be enacted into law is not only unjustifiable but further shows that President Buhari/ APC-led government like successive government formed by the PDP between 1999 and 2015 is highly insensitive to the plight of the Nigeria workers.
Bamigboye argued that in the face of the current economic indices like inflation and devaluation in the country today, it is obvious that the proposed N30, 000 minimum wage which is equivalent to $83 is not only too low for workers to live above poverty but also far lesser than the real value of current N18, 000 minimum wage which was $92 as at of 2011 it was signed into law and the minimum wage of N125 which was equally equivalent to $250 received by the Nigeria workers over thirty years ago. Therefore, if the Nigeria workers can be persuaded to accept the proposed figure of N30, 000 as the new minimum wage, against the initial demand of N65, 000, it is so unfair and wicked for the Buhari-led government to continue to delay the transmission of the same proposed N30, 000 to the national assembly for enactment into law.
“It is in the light of this, Bamigboye throws his weight behind the Nigeria workers in their struggle for the enactment and implementation of the proposed minimum wage of N30000. At the same time calls on the labour leaders to remain resolute and steadfast as he believes that the proposed minimum wage of N30, 000 is achievable and payable if the resources at the disposal of the country is judiciously utilised under the democratic control and involvement of workers and the people. This will also include that the outrageous salaries and allowances including other frivolous privileges often enjoyed by political office holders will have to be drastically reduced while the fraudulent contract system through which politicians who masquerade as contractors and business men often used to siphon the public fund will also have to be stopped. “In fact, stopping hundreds of millions of naira allocated to Security Vote every month will liberate resources for many social programmes.”, Abiodun Bamigboye stated.”
Bamigboye therefore, tasks the leadership of the labour movement to demand alongside immediate enactment of the newly proposed N30,000 minimum wage, drastic reduction in the outrageous emoluments often earned by political office holders to the level of salaries and allowances earned by civil servants while basic infrastructure that will respond to the education and health care need of the people must be massively expanded through a public work programme under democratic control of workers and the community people.
He equally call on the labour leadership to go beyond threat of ‘voting out governors and political parties that fail to support new minimum wage’. As much as workers has the right to exercise their potential collective political power to fight for their interests, Bamigboye believe that the best approach to this is for the labour leaders to take the bold step to build political alternative to dislodge the current capitalist class in government at all levels.
“This is because only a pro-workers and poor government formed on the basis of socialist programme can have the capacity to pay new minimum wage without retrenchment, and still be able to employ more workers on decent wages through mass public work programme and investment on social services and industry while also ensuring significant improvement in the well-being of the other categories of the working people who are not salary earners.”
Bamigboye therefore, urges all civil servants in the state to vote for all SPN candidates in the state.