By Mirian Gom, Abuja
The public complaints commission (PCC) on Wednesday shut down it’s offices across the country over non- implementation of the national minimum wage and 17 months arrears owed staff by the federal government
The commission, which was created to address complaints by aggrieved citizens or residents in Nigeria against administrative injustice, has for more than a year battled neglect by government, resulting in poorly paid salaries of its workers.
Speaking at the peaceful protest organised by the joint unions of Public Complaints Commission at its headquarters in Abuja, Comrade Isa Usman Degri, the vice chairman of the Nigerian Civil service union (NCSU), said the non- implementation of the minimum wage had become worrisome as all efforts by the union to resolve the issue with the management of the Commission proved abortive
According to him, “The Minimum Wage Act was signed into law in April 18, 2019, almost all the federal agencies have started implementing from November.
“All establishments have been paid the minimum wage and arrears due but the commission, which is established under the presidency is yet to get their pay neither implementation of the minimum wage.
“We come out of the shell to do the needful, the needful here is for the union to fight for the rights of his members. ” Salary is an issue of rights and not a privilege, in the labour movement when an issue is a privilege we beg, when is an issue of right we fight for it. Our members have earned this money and must be paid.
“Since the ultimatum issued has expired, we have taken this to the next level which is the shut down of all our offices across the country, and this lockdown must continue till the money is released
“As we speak, we have written a circular which was distributed through all the states of the federation. We have ordered that all our offices in states of the federation be shut down,” he said.
He, however, alleged that the national assembly has denied the project section of the commission’s inclusion into the 2020 template budget of personnel cost, which is the money required to implement the minimum wage.
The Joint Union of Public Complaints Commission is made up of the Parliamentary Staff Association of Nigeria(PSAN), Association of Senior Civil Servants of Nigeria and the Nigeria Civil Service Union.
The protesters carried placards with inscriptions like, “we are tired of under payment of salary “; “workers salary is a right, not a favour “; ” pay us our promotion arrears “, among others.