Reps slams NLC, TUC for circulating fake earnings of lawmakers

The House of Representatives has launched a scathing critique against organised labour, namely the Nigeria Labour Congress (NLC) and Trade Union Congress (TUC), accusing them of disseminating what it deems to be “fake earnings” of their members to the public.

In a statement released by its spokesperson, Akin Rotimi, on Tuesday, the House condemned the alleged attempt by labour groups to incite public resentment against lawmakers and undermine the legislature’s integrity.

Highlighting the potential repercussions of such actions, the House warned that they could fuel public animosity towards legislators and erode trust in the legislative body. Consequently, it called for those responsible for what it perceives as economic sabotage to be held accountable under the law.

The statement from the House of Representatives read, “The House of Representatives acknowledges the recent industrial action undertaken by the NLC and the TUC due to the breakdown in negotiations for a new national minimum wage.”

“The People’s House is pleased to note that the strike action has been suspended for one week to allow for further negotiation.

“During this period, as we have previously demonstrated, the People’s House remains responsive and committed to actively engaging all stakeholders to resolve the issues in the best interest of Nigerians.

“House Speaker Abbas Tajudeen has consistently advocated a living wage and better working conditions for workers.

“At various fora, he has emphasised the importance of addressing key national priorities, including the state of the economy and insecurity, through legislative action.

“While the Green Chamber is in full support of the call for improved wages and working conditions, there is a great need to exercise caution in increasing the minimum wage beyond what our economy can sustain to avoid unintended outcomes such as inflation, layoffs, and other adverse economic consequences.

“Thus, we restate the importance of approaching this issue from a balanced perspective to ensure long-term stability and prosperity for all.

“In the same vein, we observed with concern the direction of the strike action before its suspension and what it portends for the future.”

The House also condemned the shutdown of critical infrastructure, such as the national grid and airports, during the joint unions’ mandated strike.

“Importantly, the shutdown of critical infrastructure, such as the national grid, constitutes economic sabotage and is detrimental to the well-being of our country. Those responsible for these actions must be held accountable.

“We also find it troubling that the leadership of Organised Labour, the majority of who live far above the means of the average Nigerian, would engage in actions that exacerbate the suffering of ordinary citizens.

“It is necessary, therefore, to state that while industrial actions and dissent are fundamental rights within our democratic space that must be protected, the manner in which Labour conducted itself during the just-suspended strike largely shows a lack of empathy for Nigerians.

“Is the objective of the leadership of the unions to compel the government to implement a living wage or to inflict pain on Nigerians?

“Additionally, it is important to address persistent misinformation and disinformation propagated by organised Labour leadership regarding the earnings of lawmakers.

“This is especially because organised Labour has, for years, contributed to false narratives about the remuneration of members of the National Assembly, exaggerating figures to stoke public resentment and undermine the credibility of the Legislature.

“This tactic diverts attention from the core issues at stake and unfairly vilifies the institution of parliament. It is crucial for all parties to engage in an honest and transparent dialogue rather than resorting to the spread of inaccuracies for political leverage.

“Contrary to the insinuations of the Labour leadership through its social media platforms, the Legislature is on the side of Nigerians and will continue to act in the best interest of our constituents – giving meaning to their mandate.

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Source:

Tribune Online