May Day: Workers suppose collect salary from employers wey Coronavirus COVID-19 lockdown affect?
- Olubunmi Okunnu
- Broadcast Journalist
Since 1 May, 1886 wen di first Workers' Day celebration start for US America, 1 May, 2020 na di first May Day in history wey millions of workers no go fit go out to celebrate, sake of di coronavirus pandemic.
Alreadi inside dis mata many pipo don lose jobs, some odas chop pay cut since 11 March wen WHO characterize COVID-19 as a pandemic, meaning say di disease don spread all ova di world. Since then na so so lockdown or curfew dey around di world just to stop di spread.
And as e be say dis palava don forces offices, factories, bizness dem and workshops to close, di big kwesion now na weda workers suppose collect salary during coronavirus lockdown?
Oga of Nigeria joinbodi of private employers don tell BBC say coronavirus lockdown no mean say employers go just stop to dey pay salary to dia workers.
Timothy Olawale, di Director General of National Employers Consultative Association - NECA, caution say employers need to respect di agreement wey dem get wit staff and so dem no fit just decide by demsef to stop - or even reduce - workers money.
"As long as di contract between you and your worker still dey and you never sack am, na your responsibility to pay," Olawale tok.
But if di employer must reduce salary or not pay at all, e must follow due process, like give notice period.
But when di BBC ask Oga Olawale say what about di informal sector, wey no too dey use proper contract? E answer even those ones dey get agreement with mouth.
For Nigeria, di reality for many small and medium bizness dem be say na money wey dem dem make daily, na im dem take keep di bizness alive. So, one day of no bizness go cause dem wahala, not to tok of over 30 days lockdown sake of coronavirus.
Lagos, di commercial capital of Nigeria, na one of di first cities to declare lockdown for March and from that day some business owners don tell dia staff say make dem no expect salary.
Like di case of Juliet Mary wey bin dey work as manager for island-based Chinese restaurant. She tell BBC how di owner close down di business to obey goment lockdown order but e come refuse to pay March salary to workers. April own too don join queue now.
Nigeria goment announce recently say nationwide lockdown go be di next phase in dia plans to reduce di spread of coronavirus.
Since 30 March, 2020, na only Lagos and Ogun States for south west region and Abuja, di political capital of Nigeria be di places wey Presido Muhammadu Buhari order lockdown for.
But NECA oga say nationwide lockdown go dabaru di tins as e no dey sustainable for di kontri.
Oga Olawale say im joinbodi don even write to di federal goment to ask dem to reconsider di plan, because e no go favour millions of workers across di kontri.
E reason am say many employers wey no dey see business do go instead sack dia workers since dem no get money to pay.
Di oga of NECA suggestion be say make federal goment close inter-state borders, but make dem free business to resume inside di states.
Although e caution say for dis suggestion to work, pipo go need to take safety and hygiene very serious. Dem go need to dey wear mask, wash hands, do isolation if bodi dey do pesin one kain and follow all goment health guidelines.
International Labour Organisation, wey bi world joinbody for workers all ova di world don reason am for dia new report say almost 3.3 billion workers for di world fit lose dia jobs sake of di Covid-19 pandemic.