N30, 000 New Minimum Wage started April 18, FG insists

By alex • May 26, 2019, 07 PM • 235 views • 42 comments

By Johnbosco Agbakwuru

ABUJA – THE Federal Government has said that no governor in the 36 states of the federation will say that he will not pay the new minimum wage of N30, 000.


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Minister of Labour and Employment, Senator Chris Ngige who stated this in an interview in Abuja, weekend, maintained that payment of the new wage started from April 18, when President Muhammadu Buhari signed the Minimum Wage Amendment Act Bill into law.

The Minister said that it had become imperative that all employers of labour in the country should comply with the law which he said was a national law, adding that a committee was working out a new template for upward consequential adjustment for those already earning above N30,000.

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Describing the negotiation for a new minimum wage as a tortuous one, he advised employers of labour especially those who have not started implementation of the new law to do so in order to avoid accumulating arrears.

He said, “It is a national law and no governor can say he will not pay. Issue of national minimum wage is item 34 on the exclusive legislative list of the third schedule of the Nigerian constitution.

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“Issue of labour is also there and not on the concurrent list. If it is on the concurrent list, then they can make their own state Assembly laws on that. Every state government is now owing workers if they have not start paying N30,000.

“They (employers) are owing workers effective from 18th of April, a new minimum wage. We are now in a committee working out a new template with which we will adjust upward the consequential adjustment upstairs for those already earning above N30,000.


“The minimum wage is for the most vulnerable down the ladder and that is the man on grade level one step one. So, you must consequentially adjust for the man on grade level two, grade level three, grade level four and five, because that man on GL 1 step 1 has over taken them with his new payment.

“That is what we refer to as consequential adjustment. This consequential adjustment touches more the people on the lower ladder and we are working it out. The negotiation is going to be with the Joint Negotiating Council in both the federal and at the state level.

“What we are trying to do now with the Salaries and Wages Commission is that we have a technical committee working out what the federal government will do for their workers and advice the state government appropriately.

“In 2011, there was a mistake in the consequential adjustment in some states when they applied the principle of percentage increase across board and they ran into trouble and were unable to pay. What this N30,000 translates into is that there is a 67 percent increase.

“If a state government applies the same 67 percent increase across board, there will be serious trouble, the same with the federal government and when there is that trouble, there will be trade dispute because the principle of ability to pay will come in and ILO encourages us to apply those principle in our discussion.

“If I am unable to pay and my workers know that I am unable to pay, we will sit down and agree on what I am able to pay. So, there is a baseline now as no worker in Nigeria should earn anything less than N30,000 provided that the establishment has more than 25 workers.”


Asked when workers would begin to enjoy the new minimum wage, Senator Ngige whose office midwife the new wage said,” They will enjoy it. Infact, they have started enjoying it. Employers in the private sector adjusted immediately because it is easier for them to do. In the government sector, the bureaucracy and bottleneck of government is responsible for the d


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