News Brief

The Nigerian Government Has Agreed to a 66 Percent Minimum Wage Increase

A nationwide strike was called off after President Buhari agreed to worker's demands for increased minimum wage.

Trade unions reached an agreement with the Nigerian government on Tuesday to raise the country's minimum wage by 66 percent.

A worker's strike that was slated to be held today by members of the Nigerian Labor Congress was suspended after the government agreed to raise the national minimum wage from 18,000 naira ($50) to 30,000 naira ($83) a month, in a proposal set forth by the Tripartite Committee on National Minimum Wage.

The strike had the potential to shut down the country's economy as many labor strikes have in the past. The union has sent a report for President Buhari's review, says Nigerian Labor Congress spokesperson Benson Upa.


"Following... the signing of the final report recommending 30,000 naira as the recommended new national minimum wage... the strike called to commence tomorrow has been suspended," said the National Labor Congress' General Secretary Ozo-Eson.

"We all need to stand ready in a state of full mobilization in case future action becomes necessary to push for the timely enactment and implementation of the new minimum wage," he added.

Unions initially pushed for a 50,000 naira ($164) a month minimum wage, which the government declined, reports Reuters.

With Nigeria's elections nearing, Buhari will undoubtedly face questions regarding his economic policies. To some, this move appears as an attempt to gain favor amongst working class citizens, and the country's youth in particular. For now, the increased minimum wage is being seen as a victory for workers and labor rights unions.

Other commentators online, however, have pointed out that the wage remains considerably low, especially considering the types of salaries Nigerian politicians are known to take in.




(Photo by Jack Vartoogian/Getty Images)

Blitz the Ambassador Named 2020 Guggenheim Fellow

The Ghanaian artist and filmmaker is among 175 "individuals who have demonstrated exceptional capacity for productive scholarship or exceptional creative ability in the arts."

Ghanaian filmmaker Blitz Bazawule, also known as Blitz the Ambassador has been named a 2020 Guggenheim fellow.

The musician, artist and director behind he critically acclaimed film The Burial of Kojo, announced the news via social media on Thursday, writing: "Super excited to announce I've been awarded the Guggenheim 2020 Fellowship. Truly grateful and inspired."

He is among 175 scholars, "appointed on the basis of prior achievement and exceptional promise, the successful candidates were chosen from a group of almost 3,000 applicants in the Foundation's ninety-sixth competition," says the Guggenheim.

Keep reading... Show less
Culture
Photo by Sabelo Mkhabela.

6 South African Podcasts to Listen to During the Lockdown

Here are six South African podcasts worth listening to.

South Africa has been on lockdown for almost two weeks as a measure to curb the spread of the COVID-19 virus, and it looks like the period might just get extended. If you are one of those whose work can't be done from home, then you must have a lot of time in your hands. Below, we recommend six South African podcasts you can occupy yourself with and get empowered, entertained and informed.


Keep reading... Show less
Photo courtesy of BLK JKS.

7 South African Punk Bands You Should Check Out

Here are some South African punk bands—old and new—that you should be listening to.

For many years, the punk scene in South Africa has been thriving through a hands-on DIY attitude in which bands can foster their own homegrown audience without relying on mainstream culture. Music festivals like Soweto Rock Revolution have played a big part in it. Bands like National Wake showed the way and TCIYF are following that path and making punk more relevant than ever in the country.

Here are seven South African punk bands you should check out.

Keep reading... Show less

get okayafrica in your inbox

news.

popular.