THE Federal Government finally bowed to Labour on Wednesday, as it announced the appointment of Mohammed Lawal Buba as the chairman of board of the Petroleum Products Pricing Regulatory Agency (PPPRA).
Secretary to the Government of the Federation (SGF), Babachir Lawal, disclosed this to the leadership of Nigeria Labour Congress (NLC), during the re-negotiation meeting between the NLC and the Federal Government representatives on Wednesday.
The botched meeting between the Federal Government and the NLC was reconstituted to review issues involved in the new pump price of petrol, following the increase in the pump price by the government.
Alhaji Buba, a former Managing Director of Petroleum Products Marketing Company (PPMC), has also expressed willingness to serve on the board.
The SGF said the board comprises 25 members, adding that letters had been sent to other members selected from related agency and groups in the industry.
The Board of PPPRA is the only body with statutory power to determine and fix prices of petroleum products, but had not been constituted for over four years.
Lawal, who highlighted what the government had put in place in respect of Labour demands, also disclosed that a 16-man committee had been set up to look into various issues that emanated from the hike in price of petrol, such as the minimum wage, implementation of the N500 billion palliative in the 2016 budget, as well as the review of the pump price.
Minister of Labour and Employment, Senator Chris Ngige, said the issue of review of the minimum wage was a tripartite negotiation arrangement, adding that the 16-man committee was expected to work out the framework to constitute the tripartite committee for the minimum wage review.
Ngige, who declared himself as the chairman of the committee, added that “we are waiting for NLC to forward their nominees so that the committee can be inaugurated sometime next week.”
On the issue of factions in the NLC, Senator Ngige said “we don’t know of any faction. We had our problem as a government and NLC is NLC, TUC is TUC.
“We would not pry into anybody’s problem. If they have in-house problem, they would solve it. Husband and wife have problems and they reconcile. Government would be willing to play major role to make sure we have one indivisible NLC.”
The NLC president, Comrade Ayuba Wabba, who led other Labour leaders to the meeting, said it was successful.