Buhari had while inaugurating a Technical Advisory Committee on National Minimum Wage in Abuja on Wednesday said there would be negotiations with workers already earning above N30,000 to help the Federal Government and the states to implement a new wage increase smoothly.
A new proposal of N30,000 is now before the President, which will be forwarded to the National Assembly on January 23 as a bill.
But the governors said they had already told the President the financial crisis the proposed N30,000 minimum wage would bring to their states if approved.
A governor, who spoke on condition of anonymity, told one of our correspondents that the Nigeria Governors’ Forum, as a body, had sent to the President financial analysis of how the increment would affect 30 states.
The governor listed states that were covered in the first report to include “Kebbi, Ondo, Edo, Ebonyi, Bauchi and Plateau.”
It was gathered that some states had agreed to pay more than N30,000 but the governors were said to have collectively said the minimum wage should be pegged at N22,500 in order to help some states that were not financially viable.
Such states, it was gathered, included Kogi, Osun and Benue.
It was gathered that Jigawa State even offered to pay as much as N44,000 if the minimum wage was left at N22,500.
The governor, who spoke on condition of anonymity, added, “So, what we did was to help states that can’t pay N18,000 now to struggle and pay the N22,500 while those paying now should be able to manage the increment without much problems.
“Now, if the President goes ahead to send a bill that will contain N30,000 to the National Assembly without considering what we have told him, there will be crisis in the country. We will wait to see what will happen. I’m sure that the National Assembly will not pass the bill this year.
“I’m also sure that the President may still scale down the minimum wage to what we have agreed to pay or the N24,000 that the Federal Government suggested.
“We will expect the President to appeal to the sensibilities of workers on this matter. If you listened to the President in his interview two days ago, he said that it was better to get the N18,000 than not to get at all.
“In the interview, the President also said he was aware that there were states that owe salaries up to six months.” SHARE THIS STORY USING ANY OF THE BUTTON BELOW ⬇ PLACE YOUR TEXT ADVERT BELOW ⬇⬇⬇