The National Human Rights Commission (NHRC) insists there is no tension over the issue of minimum wage and that complainants and staff across the 36 states of the federation are going about their lawful business without any disruption, molestation or any tension around the offices.
Executive Secretary of the Commission Tony Ojukwu Esq stated this while reacting to recent media report, not LEADERSHIP which sta that there is tension at the human rights commission over minimum wage.
While calling on staff of the Commission to be wary of malicious information from misguided forces that could prevent them from carrying out their duties as human rights defenders, ojukwu also said their welfare is of out most importance and can never be taken for granted
He said his Commission is determined to continually encourage members of the public to access its services of promotion, protection and enforcement of their fundamental human rights as guaranteed by the Constitution of the federal republic of Nigeria 1999 as amended as well as other human rights instruments to which Nigeria is a party.
“Although there was a planned industrial action by the NHRC unit of Nigerian Civil Service Union (NCSU) which was scheduled to take place today, 16/7/20, this did not take place. This is because after due consideration of the urgency involved in preserving the rights of Nigerians to access the services of the commission especially by lodging complaints of human rights violation, which would have been disrupted by the purported industrial action, the commission approached the national industrial court which issued an order to stop the intended disruption of business at NHRC offices pending the determination of issues of contention”.
“It would be recalled that this is the 4th attempt by the union to disrupt the commission from carrying out its statutory mandate of promotion and protection of human rights by the misguided Union leadership supported by the erstwhile chairman of the commission”, he said.
The number one human rights fighter revealed that the union had sometimes in 2019 sued the commission to court over the implementation of the provision of the civil service rule on oath of secrecy which failed, and further lamented that they are using the case of minimum wage as a reason to achieve what he described as their unpopular plan.
He further added that theissue of minimum wage to MDAs on statutory transfer is not peculiar to the Commission alone and should not be a cause for industrial action at this time.
“No agency has threatened to embark on industrial action except the NHRC Union, this is because they are unreasonably being brain washed and instigated by outside forces, not minding the offer by the Management to reduce existing welfare packages to make up for funds to pay the new minimum wage pending when issues around minimum wage and arrears are sorted out for all MDAs on statutory transfer. These include PCC, INEC, NASS, NJC, UBEC etc. The management therefor took decisive steps to ensure the union leadership is properly guided so as not to mislead staff members”.
“As at now, all NHRC offices nationwide are open for business and complainants are free to access the services of the commission. All the senior staff are on duty to attend to complainants. Due to covid 19 regulations, all junior staff and officers On and below grade level 13 are working from home unless those on essential services. It will be recalled the National civil service union is the association of junior officers in the civil service”, he further stated.
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