Workers, before now, always look forward for May 1 as their day. A day they mark with funfare. Parades and bright uniforms adore the stadiums all over the country. In Lokoja, NLC will host all the sister unions in the township stadium. Today, the day has turned to a mourn day. A day workers remember that their full and inadequate salaries has been fractionalised.
Minimum wage is heard on radio and implemented in some states but the old one of #18000 done in 2011 is reduced to #6000.
May Day is a period of agitation for better workers welfare. Sorry, our labour has lost grip of agitation. They don’t even know where and what to ask for. A period when minimum wage, leave bonus, increments, and even 13th month payments are demanded and approved in many states. But here, it is an agitation to increase salaries from 29% to 40%.
Still, I salute pensioners, teachers and local government workers. At least, they are alive. They are suffering but should learn one or two lessons from their present situation; self reliance.
Workers should brace up for more hardship. A close look at Nigeria economy will tell them things are no longer rosy. Allocation are on the downward trend. Inflation on the high rise. Politicians on the the high wave of corruption and massive accumulation of wealth for self and their immediate families.
Workers should pray. Workers should equally vote in good union leaders and not hungry ones whose main aim is to win election and buy cars or build houses at the detriment of workers.
Workers should campaign against wicked government during elections. Voting evil party is tantamount to voting in bad governance. Bad government will surely bring in evil periods of banditry, insurgency, corruption, bad economy, political instability etc. Remember, workers bear the brunt.
I look forward to when workers will be able to build houses, organise cooperatives, buy vehicles, feed well, train their children in good schools and live a stress less life.
To those who are enemies of workers, both civil and politicians, your evil days are waiting.
– Hon Elesho Abiodun Joseph writes from Isanlu, Kogi State