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Development is more important, we can only pay N22,500 wage – Governors tell Labour

Development is more important, we can only pay N22,500 wage – Governors tell Labour

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Arising from its emergency meeting in Abuja late Tuesday, Governors of Nigeria’s thirty-six states under the aegis of the Nigeria Governors’ Forum (NGF) have restated their stance on the issue of the national minimum wage.

The state chief executives are insisting that they can only pay N22,500 as against the N24, 000 earlier offered by the Federal Government and the N30,000 being demanded by organised labour.

Chairman of the forum and Governor of Zamfara, Abdulaziz Yari, who briefed journalists after the meeting, said the welfare of all Nigerians was its ultimate concern, adding that the Forum is even more concerned about development, particularly in the health, education and infrastructure spheres.

Yari who also stressed that the governors were concerned about the deteriorating economic situation experienced by the vulnerable segment of the country’s population, explained the governors position on the issue referring to Section 3 of the National Salaries Income and Wages Commission Act which provides that ‘the Commission shall recommend a proposition of income growth which should be initiated for wage increase and also examine the salary structure in public and private sectors with reasonable features of relativity and maximum levels which are in consonance with the national economy.’

“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,” he said.

“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,” he added.

Organised labour has however vowed to go on strike from November 6, 2018, if government refused to take a decisive action on its demand.

The meeting was attended by the Ministers of Labour and Employment, Chris Ngige, National Planning, Udoma Udoma as well as the governors of Osun, Zamfara, Ondo, Ogun, Ebonyi, Lagos, Imo, Kebbi, Ekiti, Edo, Plateau and Nasarawa who was represented by his Deputy.

 

Read » Development is more important, we can only pay N22,500 wage – Governors tell Labour on YNaija

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