N60k minimum wage too high -Nigerian Governors Forum

Governors of the 36 states of the federation have rejected the N60,000 minimum wage earlier proposed by the Federal Government.

The Director Media and Public Affairs of the Nigeria Governors’ Forum (NGF), Hajiya Halimah Salihu Ahmed, disclosed this in a statement on Friday.

Recall that the Nigeria Labour Congress (NLC) and the Trade Union Congress (TUC), on Monday embarked on an indefinite strike action after rejecting the federal government’s N60,000 offer as minimum wage.

But they later announced that they would relax the strike action for one week to give room for further negotiations with the federal government, which had promised to increase the wage from N60,000.

However, the governors said the N60,000 wage is not realistic and unsustainable, arguing that if implemented, it would force some states in the country to be borrowing to pay workers’ salaries.

The statement reads in part, “The Nigeria Governors’ Forum (NGF) is in agreement that a new minimum wage is due. The Forum also sympathises with labour unions in their push for higher wages.

“However, the Forum urges all parties to consider the fact that the minimum wage negotiations also involve consequential adjustments across all cadres, including pensioners.

“The NGF cautions parties in this important discussion to look beyond just signing a document for the sake of it; any agreement to be signed should be sustainable and realistic.

“All things considered, the NGF holds that the N60,000 minimum wage proposal is not sustainable and can not fly. It will simply mean that many states will spend all their FAAC allocations on just paying salaries with nothing left for development purposes.

“In fact, a few states will end up borrowing to pay workers every month. We do not think this will be in the collective interest of the country, including workers.

“We appeal that all parties involved, especially the labour unions, consider all the socioeconomic variables and settle for an agreement that is sustainable, durable, and fair to all other segments of the society who have legitimate claim to public resources.”

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