Bloomberg News

Nigerian Unions Plan Three-Day Strike Over Minimum Wage

July 13, 2011

(Updates with union leader’s comments starting in fourth paragraph.)

July 13 (Bloomberg) -- Nigerian labor unions will go on a three-day “warning strike” from July 20 to demand the payment of the new 18,000-naira ($118) minimum wage, the leader of the country’s biggest labor group said.

“There will be no work, no flights and people should take those three days as holidays and stay at home,” Owei Lakemfa, secretary-general of the Nigerian Labour Congress, said by phone today from Abuja, the capital.

President Goodluck Jonathan in March signed into law legislation that raised the monthly minimum wage from 9,500 naira. The unions say workers haven’t received the new salary.

Unions are prepared to call an indefinite strike if the new wage structure is not implemented after the warning action, Lakemfa said.

“In that case, government will either break us, or we will break their will,” he said. “It is ironic that citizens have to force governments to obey the law.”

--Editors: Karl Maier, Digby Lidstone

To contact the reporter on this story: Vincent Nwanma at

To contact the editor responsible for this story: Antony Sguazzin at

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