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New minimum wage: Ngige blames state Govs over delay

As Nigerians await the Buhari administration’s promise of a new minimum wage for workers, the inability of state governors to come up with a uniform amount has been attributed to the delay in arrival at acceptable minimum wage.

The Minister of Labour and Employment, Dr. Chris Ngige, who said this, added that the federal government is ready to complete the paper work on the new wage and pass it to law, but is still awaiting an agreed amount by the governors to achieve this.

Daily Times recalls that the organised labour in its quest to ensure a living wage for Nigeria workers, had engaged the present administration on finding a meeting ground for a suitable amount of wage for Nigerian workers.

Ngige, who disclosed this at a press briefing Wednesday in Obosi, Idemili Local Government Area of Anambra state, further observed that efforts by government is in top gear to ensure a good welfare package for Nigeria workers.

While stating that the committee saddled with the responsibility to work out the modalities for the new wage had been up and about, Ngige said the Nigerian Governors’ Forum (NGF), had been unable to come up with any figure as a minimum wage they could pay.

Describing the governors as critical partners in wage determination, Ngige said as an insider and a realist, he would not want to give any date or month when the minimum wage would be implemented.

This, he said, was because the process of fixing the new minimum wage was still a little bit longer.

He added that “we have a tripartite committee on that. I am a member of the committee. I’m its deputy chairman, so to say. We have a timetable and we would have finished everything about it by the end of this August, but it is no longer tenable because the committee is not yet done with certain things.

“We couldn’t agree on a figure because of two reasons; partly the state governors have not come up with a figure and the state governors are a critical constituent of this discussion.

“We have six governors in the committee, one from each geo-political zone. So, the NGF has not come up with their figure; they said they were still working on it; that was the last submission they made to us and the federal government team”.

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