The House of Representatives has resolved to interface with corporate institutions in the country so as to explore possible interventions to reduce their wage, in view of the impact of the COVID-19 pandemic on businesses in the country.
Consequently, the House at Tuesday’s plenary resolved to set up an ad-hoc committee to undertake the assignment.This followed the adoption of a motion by Henry Nwawuba on the ” urgent need to protect Nigerian workers from compulsory leave and massive job losses.”
Nwawuba, in his motion, noted that the COVID -19 pandemic has significantly challenged the stability of corporate organisations and governments around the world thereby distorting global socio-economic ecosystems.
The lawmaker stated that the protection and support for organised and informal private sector workers under the current circumstances has become imperative for continued economic and social development of the country.
He said “a large number of Nigerian workers are being employed by both the organized private sector and big corporate organizations as well as the informal sector and medium scale industries with little or no job security and those workers have no other benefits like the regular civil servants, as provided in the Labour Act.
“…most of the workers have been working from home since the lockdown without asking for extra pay or gratuity, however some banks and institutions have started asking their staff to proceed on compulsory leave.”
Nwawuba expressed worry that there are indications that after the COVID-19 pandemic, most employers may want to disengage some of the workers owing the unforeseen consequences of the pandemic in businesses.
He expressed concerns “that if the needful is not done as quickly as possible to bolster key sectors through Federal Government economic packages in terms of income support, tax credits or tax deferrals, short-term work schemes, wage subsidies and tax moratoriums on loan payments for those organizations, unimaginable mass job losses loom in Nigeria and this could lead to a great distortion in the economic growth graph of the nation.”