A couple of days back, some state governors protested that they couldn’t afford to pay their workers the N18,000 minimum wage due to lack of fund. This didn’t go down well with the Nigeria Labour Congress (NLC), as the body insisted the state governors must comply.
A cross section of Nigerians ENCOMIUM Weekly spoke to also backed NLC’s action. Some even demanded the impeachment of any governor who claims he couldn’t pay the agreed minimum wage.
‘It is pathetic’ – Tunde Akingbade
It is so disappointing that the people charged with the responsibility of improving the lives of the masses are the same ones inflicting the most pain. It is pathetic. These governors that are agitating for a downward review of the minimum wage because of the financial woes we’ve found ourselves, have they, for once thought about cutting their own salaries and allowances?
I thought the leader is supposed to lead by example. For instance, if these governors cut their own earnings and reduce the overhead cost of running government, it would make sense, people would have little opposition to it. But when you want to take the people for granted, and plunge them into untold hardship, that will not work.
It is a total no no, for me! No sane person will support this wicked arrangement. I feel the FG should wade into this, else the protests will spiral out of control and further affect the economy.
‘This is what you get when you play politics with everything’ – Jeremiah Ndukwe
This is what you get when you play politics with everything. When innovative individuals campaign for public posts, we fail to vote them in, rather we play politics or allow stomach infrastructure to sway us in voting. What you get is a result of a bunch of “leaders” who are selfish, and can’t proffer solutions to the problems of the people they are leading.
Granted, there’s a real problem of financial shortage, but should the people who clearly have no way to turn other than their salaries be made to bear the burden?
The governors can complain about all they want for not being able to pay their workers’ salaries, yet they maintain government houses, a bogus cabinet with unnecessary special advisers and special assistants.
‘They should streamline their cabinet’ – Sheikh Oluwa
Federal Government can hardly pay its workers too. So, they can’t help states out. I think they should streamline their cabinet, voluntarily reduce their allowances and remunerations significantly. Not their basic salaries. Be more prudents, spend money only on multiple effect projects and drastically reduce recurrent expenditure.
‘I can’t blame the government for wanting to reduce the minimum wage’ – Abdul Abdul-Ganiyu
My reaction is that you can’t blame the government for wanting to reduce the minimum wage if they can’t truly afford it. The best way to address the issue is for those states to get more allocation from the Federal Governme-nt for payment of salaries and wages in the 2016 budget.
‘It’s going to get a whole lot bumpy before we get comfortable’ – Olabowale Erinle
It’s expected. I believe we are on a journey and it’s going to get a whole lot bumpy before we get comfortable. So, the agitations, the protest are all part of a much bigger process. Allocation of funds in all government tiers seems to be an issue now because the Federal Government is looking for transparent ways to solve the issue of corruption.
It won’t be all easy and smooth. Proper planning, allocation and budgeting and proper execution is what all the government authorities should engage in.
‘The Federal Government should increase its allocation to the states’ – Opeymi Kalejaiye
Those states have the right to protest because they can’t afford the proposed minimum wage. The Federal Government should increase its allocation to the states, so that they can afford to comply with the new standards.
‘It is really not fair’ – Ishola Martins
It is sad because even the said minimum wage is hardly enough and they want to reduce it. It is really not fair. They should borrow funds and help the said states. People are already suffering. It would be bad to increase their suffering by reducing the minimum wage. School fees and other bills are on the increase so, why should the minimum wage be reduced.
‘Hoe do they want workers to survive?’ – Emmanuel Adeyeri
I think the states that don’t want to pay the full minimum wage or claim not to be able to pay due to lack of funds are just evil. How do they want people to survive? The Federal Government should kindly come to the aid of the states involved.
‘All the states should be able to pay their workers the agreed minimum wage’ – Mercy Okechukwu
I don’t think there is anything wrong in the agitation of the Nigeria Labour Congress (NLC). All the states should be able to pay their workers the agreed minimum wage. If they find it difficult to fulfil, they can as well make a case for a bailout again as it’s done when they owed their workers many months salary.
They should not tell their workers any story, they should just make sure the minimum wage is effected in their respective states. I even disagree with them totally. What they’re claiming is a way of avoiding their statutory role in their various states. Rather than not making their workers happy, they should just stop some of the unnecessary and resource wasting projects they’re embarking on.
‘The issue is not all that difficult’ – Ibrahim Amusa
The issue is not all that difficult. It’s the Federal Government that has a very significant role to play in that respect. If the minimum wage must be paid by all the states of the federation, I think the Federal allocation of all the weak states should be increased so as to accommodate the minimum wage.
Also, I believe some states could still afford the payment if they reduce their capital expenditures. So, I support the Nigeria Labour Congress (NLC) insisting that all states should ensure the N18,000 minimum wage is paid to their workers.
‘It is really uncalled for’ – Esther Oluwafemi
It is really uncalled for. Some states are wasteful, really. They lavish money on frivolous spending and they want the masses to suffer for it. What can N18,000 buy. Most people collecting that amount are family men and women with children, yet, some people are saying they should reduce the money. Can’t such governors take from their own personal earning to make up for the shortage. After all, they are there to serve. The government should not give them loan. They should generate the money and pay by themselves. The Federal Government needs to checkmate frivolous spending by states.
‘I think those state governors should be impeached’ – Biodun Ahmed
I think those state governors should be impeached. It’s funny. What goes through the mind of some of these political leaders is funny, the N18,000 is not even enough for some of them to fuel their vehicles in a day, then that’s being given to people who have large numbers of people to cater for and they’re calling for a cut? That’s despicable.
Federal Government should ensure no state stop the minimum wage. It’s even high time they reviewed it upward. Federal Government can lead by example.