President Muhammadu Buhari on Thursday met with the leadership of organised labour at the State House in Abuja. 

They had come to congratulate him on his victory at the February 23 presidential election and also make some requests about the new National Minimum Wage Bill. 

President Buhari had thanked them for their support and patriotism during the presidential election, especially after the unexpected postponement.

"You and your members stepped in to support willing Nigerians to exercise their civic and patriotic rights to vote.

"You intervened as patriots, and not for political, religious or tribal purposes. You simply did the right thing during a difficult period for many of us," he told them. 

Muhammadu Buhari meets with labour union leaders i

On what Nigerians can look forward to in the next lap of the journey, President Buhari said he would continue to push the Change Agenda, "and remain focused on our core pillars of security, economy, and fight against corruption".

President Buhari also urged the organised labour to partner with the government to make the country peaceful, prosperous, and corruption free.

In his remarks, the President of the Nigeria Labour Congress (NLC), Comrade Ayuba Wabba, lauded the President for being worker-friendly, as exemplified in the granting of bailout funds to state governments to pay backlog of salaries and pensions.

"We all remember the special bailout and budget support you introduced to support state governments during the recession. Your directive during this intervention was that state governments must offset accumulated arrears of salaries and pension liabilities.

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"I remember you publicly asked state governors, 'how do you manage to sleep at night when the salaries of workers in your state are not paid?'

"For us, that was one of the finest moments we have had with any President in this country...

Muhammadu Buhari meets with labour union leaders i

"I can stand here today and say your intervention was the difference between life and death for many workers," the NLC President said.

A spokesman for President Buhari, Femi Adesina, said the labour leader appealed to the National Assembly to earnestly pass the National Minimum Wage (Amendment) Bill while also asking the President to thereafter sign it into law within the shortest possible time.

Muhammadu Buhari meets with labour union leaders i

Members of the organised labour further pledged to remain "veritable partner in progress with government," counseling the President to continue to "make the Nigerian people, especially the poor, the centre-piece of your policy initiatives and actions."

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