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Wednesday, 31 October 2018

MINIMUM WAGE: At Last, Governors Accede, But Not To N30,000

MINIMUM WAGE: At Last, Governors Accede, But Not To N30,000

Nigerian governors

The Nigeria Governors’ Forum (NGF) on Tuesday agreed to pay a national minimum wage of N22,500 from the existing N18,000.

The Chairman of the Forum and Governor of Zamfara State, Abdul’aziz Yari disclosed this while briefing newsmen at the end of its 2nd emergency meeting held in Abuja.

Yari said that the decision was arrived at after a briefing from the forum representatives at the Tripartite Committee.

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He said that the welfare of all Nigerians is the ultimate concern of the governors, saying in all our states, we are concerned about the deteriorating economic situation experienced by the vulnerable segment of our population.

He said that in agreeing to a National Minimum Wage, the Forum was even more concerned about development, particularly in the health, education and infrastructure spheres.

“It is therefore our considered position that since the percentage of salaried workers is not more than five per cent of the total working population, our position must not just reflect a figure, but also a sustainable strategy based on ability and capacity to pay, as well as reflective of all our developmental needs in each State.

“After all, Section 3 of the National Salaries Income and Wages Commission Act provides that “the Commission shall recommend a proposition of income growth which should be initiated for wage increase and also examined the salary structure in public and private sector with reasonable features of relativity and maximum levels which are in consonance with the national economy”

“It is in this sense that we feel strongly that our acceptable minimum wage must be done in such a way that total personnel cost does not exceed 50 per cent of the revenue available to each State.

“Governors therefore agreed to pay a national minimum wage of N22,500.”

The meeting with the governors were the Minister of Labour and Productivity, Dr Chris Ngige and the Minister of Budget and National Planning, Sen. Udoma Udo Udoma.

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Some of the governors at the emergency meeting were Kebbi, Ebonyi, Imo, Lagos, Plateau, Osun, Ekiti, Ogun, and Nasarawa represented by Deputy, Adamawa.

The Organised Labour had scheduled Nov. 6 to embark on nationwide strike to compel government to peg a new minimum wage at N30,000.

The leaders of Nigeria Labour Congress (NLC), Trade Union Congress of Nigeria (TUC) and United Labour Congress of Nigeria (TUC), on Tuesday held mass protest across the country as part of sensitisation of workers and Nigerians for the planned industrial action.

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