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  • In 2011, minimum wage was more than doubled from N7,500 (US$30) to  N18,000 (US$50).

    In 2011, minimum wage was more than doubled from N7,500 (US$30) to N18,000 (US$50). | Photo: Reuters

Published 19 April 2019

The increase in salary comes after unions went on strike last year to demand N50,000 (US$138) a month in the country where inflation was recorded at 11.25% in March.

Nigerian President Muhammadu Buhari signed the Minimum Wage Repeal and Re-Enactment Act, 2019 into law, senior special assistant to the president on National Assembly Matters (Senate), Senator Ita Enang confirmed Thursday.

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The Act makes it compulsory for employers in Nigeria to pay wages of N30,000 (US$98) monthly, Enang explained to State House correspondents in the capital Abuja.

“It also gives workers the right if you are compelled by any circumstance to accept salary that is less than N30,000 to sue your employer to recover the balance,” the senator further shared and added that the new law is applicable to both the private and public sector, but smaller businesses - which employ fewer than 25 people - would be exempted.

The increase in salary comes after unions went on strike last year to demand N50,000 (US$138) a month in the country where inflation was recorded at 11.25% in March.

The minimum wage was previously N18,000 (US$50) and most Nigerians are forced to live on less than US$2 a day, Reuters reported. In 2011, wages were more than doubled from N7,500 (US$30).

“It also authorizes the Minister of Labour and any person nominated by the Minister of Labour or any person designated by the Minister of Labour in any ministry, department or agency to, on your behalf, take action in your name against such employer to recover the balance of your wages,” Buhari’s assistant disclosed.

The senator also noted that President Buhari is banking on the new law encouraging the Nigerian workforce and the Nigeria Labour Congress (NLC) to show more commitment to being employed.

“This excludes persons who are employing less than 25 workers, persons who work in a ship which sails out of jurisdiction and other persons who are in other kinds of regulated employment which are accepted by the Act,” Enang added.

Buhari has urged workers to be patient within the framework of the current economic climate in which the Federal Government is moving to boost road, power and rail infrastructure.

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