30 November 2018

Nigeria: Prune Your Fat Perks to Pay New Wage, NLC Tells Governors

Kano, Katsina and Lokoja — The Nigeria Labour Congress (NLC) has told the Governors' Forum that no state lacks the financial strength to pay the proposed new national minimum wage of N30,000 to workers.

It urged the state chief executives to cut down their expenditure and allowances for the actualisation of the struggle.

Kano NLC chairman, Comrade Kabiru Ado Minjibir, during the inauguration of new labour leaders in councils across the state, declared that the agitation for the new wage was a " no retreat, no surrender."

Applauding the state government's resolve to pay workers N30,600, Minjibir deplored what he described as the "recalcitrant attitude of some governors hell bent on sabotaging the workers' agitation."

He urged the Federal Government to overrule states that oppose the move.

Meanwhile, the National Union of Local Government Employees (NULGE) has accused the governors of under-developing the third tier of government through alleged emasculation of their administration nationwide.

Its national president, Comrade Ibrahim Khaleel, who spoke at the association's 40th anniversary yesterday in Katsina State, threatened to wage a wholesale campaign geared at freeing the councils from the grips of state governments.

He stated: "For selfish reasons, the state governors see local governments as insignificant and they have done everything possible to render them impotent.

"It is on the basis of this that NULGE, as a trade union, (has) decided to mobilise its teeming members to wage a total campaign to liberate the third tier of government from the jugulars of state governors for the overall development of the country."

Also, a former council chairman and legal luminary in Kogi State, John Ayewole, said that arm of government was being held by the jugulars for the governors' selfish ends.

He pointed out that they had taken over the financial and administrative workings of the council areas for personal enrichment.

The lawyer spoke yesterday in Lokoja. Besides, the chairman of state Local Government Service Commission, Professor Shaibu Ahmed Ibrahim, has canvassed adoption of the 'table payment' model for payment of council workers as obtained for state workers.

He told the Policy and Lawmakers 2018 Lecture and Awards that the idea would expose fraudsters, adding that the wage bill would not remain N2.8 billion after ghost workers might have been weeded out.


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