A MORE CORDINATED STRUGGLE OF OYO STATE WORKERS IS REQUIRED NOW!
OYO STATE CAN PAY 18000 MINIMUM WAGE BUT:
A MORE CORDINATED STRUGGLE OF OYO STATE WORKERS IS REQUIRED NOW!
The Oyo State chapter of Democratic Socialist Movement (DSM) felicitates with the entire workers in Oyo State workers on the occasion of this year event of May Day. We especially commend the public sector workers for their resoluteness in the struggle for full implementation of a N18,000 minimum wage.
It is important to state that it is exactly a year today when we of DSM had warned in a leaflet issued and circulated at last May Day, that “the entire workers and the state labour leadership must not have any illusion that Ajimobi/ACN â€“led administration in the state will expressly implement the N18,000 minimum wage which was signed into law as far back as March, 2011 for mass of working but suffering Oyo State workers”. We equally added, that “it will take a protracted and concerted struggle of mass of Oyo state workers before the implementation of this N18,000 minimum wage can be forced out of the so called progressive ACN â€“led government in the state”.
We have been vindicated. However, it is highly commendable that all attempts by the Oyo State government to impose various distorted versions of the N18,000 minimum on the mass of determined Oyo State workers have been actually met with stiff oppositions and resistance including strike actions at different occasions. For instance, the workers vehemently rejected the last rotten minimum wage scale offered by the state government with strike action. To us in DSM this scale is quite fraudulent as the percentage increase of the newly acclaimed N19, 113 minimum wage over the old minimum wage (N7,500) for step 1 level 1workers is not applied to all workers in other categories.
The increases are only substantial for the salaries of workers in Grade level 1 to 4, but there are only extremely few workers on these levels in the state workforce. The vast majority of workers who are above these grade levels only have some ridiculous amount like N1,000, N2,000 or N3,000 added to their salaries. Also, for the teachers their special allowance like Teachers Special Salary Scale (TSS) which took them several months of struggle to win, has been removed from the new Ajimobi salary scale.
As we of DSM have always maintained, if the enormous resources at the disposal of the Oyo State government is judiciously used, it is quite sufficient to guarantee more than N52,200 minimum wage originally demanded by the labour let alone the N18,000.
The Oyo State government claims that its total monthly income is N4.6 billion comprises of allocation from the federal government (N3.5 billion) and internally generated revenue (N1.1 billion). But contrary to that claim sources have shown that the total Oyo State income for the month of March 2012 alone is N10.7 billion naira. This sum is derived from excess crude oil (N2.1 billion), NNPC refund (N233.22m), Federal Account allocation (N7.38 billion) and IGR (N1.1billion). (http://economiconfidential.net/new/financial/facts.a.figures and The Guardian, March 27, 2012)
Again, the claim that the state government will need N4.2 billion on a monthly basis to be able to meet-up the financial implication to pay N18,000 minimum wage across board for Oyo State workers is quite unfounded. For instance, the result of the biometric exercise recently conducted on the entire workforce in the state revealed that the total workforce in the state is 26,006 workers as against the recent claim of 38,000 by the state government.
Given this background, it is very apparent that even if every worker in the state collects N100,000 as monthly salary, the state government will not still spend more than N2.6billion monthly to pay the entire workers salary in the state. However, a careful study of both the first and second Ajimobi salary scale has shown that no worker from grade level 1-14 takes up to N80,000 as monthly salary after the deduction of tax.
The facts above have exposed the falsehood the government is peddling to incite other sections of the oppressed strata in the state (artisans, okada riders, unemployed youths, among others) against the public sector workers in the state that the implementation will take a huge 92% of the state resources such that little or nothing will be left over to provide “dividends” of democracy for other citizens of the state. The figures and analysis above shows the claim of the state government is total falsehood. We therefore call on the members of the public to support the workers in their agitation for full implementation of minimum wage.
We call on workers through their unions to issue an ultimatum of one month to the government to meet their demands failing which there should be a warning strike. The workers must use the period of the ultimatum to embark on activities like symposia, rallies, mass circulation of leaflets to sensitize the public on their demands and mobilize their support. Workers must also insist that no agreement should be signed with government by their leaders until such is approved by a congress of workers.
The refusal of all the state governments to fully implement the minimum wage in spite of huge resources at their disposal has further shown that all governments across the country today are run by anti-poor/workers political parties. Even, when concessions like minimum wage is won in the response to the struggle of the working people they are usually taken back by the pro-capitalist government with attacks on education, healthcare etc and other anti-poor policies like increase in fuel prices, privatization and deregulation. All this shows that there will never be a permanent respite for working people as long as we continue to have government formed by the pro-capitalist parties like PDP, ACN, APGA, ACCORD, and CPC among others.
In our bid for a socialist transformation of Nigeria, we therefore call on workers, students, unemployed youths, artisans, Okada riders, professionals among others to join us in DSM as well as in the activities of Socialist Party of Nigeria (SPN) which is presently at the registration stage. We hold that it is only when a working people’s political party run on a socialist programme wins a political power with a view of running governance and production on the basis of the needs of the vast majority against the greed and super profit of the few that a permanent respite can come to the working people.
WE INVITE YOU TO A PUBLIC SYMPOSIUM SCHEDULED AS FOLLOW:
DATE: TUESDAY, MAY 29, 2012. TIME: 10AM
VENUE: STUDENT REPRESENTATIVE COUNCIL (SRC) CHAMBER, STUDENT UNION BUILDING, UNIVERSITY OF IBADAN.
13 YEARS OF CIVIL RULE, ANY GAIN FOR THE WORKING PEOPLE?
WHAT IS A MINIMUM WAGE? IS A LIVING WAGE FOR WORKERS POSSIBLE?
AFTER FUEL SUBSIDY REMOVAL: WHERE ARE THE PALLIATIVES?
DSM Contact: Tel: 08033914091, E-mail: firstname.lastname@example.org