Minimum wage: NUEE scribe, Ajaero hails EEDC, speaks on labour leaders’ sabotage
As Nigerian workers continue to await the implementation of the N30,000 minimum wage, the General Secretary of the National Union of Electricity Employees, NUEE, Comrade Joe Ajaero has declared that much task was now in the hands of State labour leaders.
He stated this in Enugu, on Thursday during the official signing-off ceremony of the conditions of service at the Enugu Electricity Distribution Company, EEDC, corporate headquarters.
Ajaero, who hailed the power distribution company for taking the step, urged the management to improve on their relationship with workers for adequate productivity.
On the minimum wage, he said State chapters of labour unions should take up the gauntlet and avoid compromise and sabotage as witnessed during the last signed minimum wage bill of N18,000.
He cited cases of Imo and Zamfara States, where he said “governor Rochas Okorocha was paying 70 percent of the minimum wage, but the labour leaders in the State could not tackle him,” adding that Zamfara also paid less.
Comrade Ajaero, however, commended the Federal Ministry of Labour, Senior Staff Association of Electricity and Allied Companies, SSAEAC, and EEDC for their contribution to making the agreement successful.
Hw said the era of workers working without promotion in the EEDC was over.
He disclosed that workers should enjoy some level of protection through signed condition of service, adding that workers who worked for some certain number of years were entitled to promotion.
“We are here for the signing of the condition of service which we have dragged for a very long time and having accomplished this agreement, we decided to pen it down on paper. Before now, we have been having bad industrial relationship between management and workers here in EEDC.
“The union works to achieve an improved working relationship with employers and employees for adequate and effective productivity.
“EEDC workers should from today as a result of this condition of service feel a bit free like other workers across the country. There will no longer be the issue of over labour. No worker will be sacked without due process anymore”, he disclosed.
He urged the workers to work hard for the survival of the company to allow them enjoy the conditions of service signed between the union leaders and the EEDC.
In a welcome address, the Managing Director of EEDC, Mr Okey Nwosu, commended the leadership of the two in-house unions, NUEE and SSAEAC and the Federal Ministery of Labour for their contribution to creating an acceptable condition of service for workers.
Lamenting the enormous challenges encountered by electricity distribution companies, he urged every employee of the organization to be more committed and dedicated to duty to surmount those challenges.
Mr Nwosu, who was represented by the Deputy Director of the company, Mr Paul Okeke, said that the company had been recognising and rewarding hard-working staff through incentives and promotions.
He disclosed that the company is not anti-labour, provided that their activities do not interfere with the company’s business or operations.
Also speaking, the President General of SSAEAC, Engr. Chris Okonkwo, who urged the workers to sustain the terms of service by being productive, called for staff/management engagement for effective service delivery.