By Lateef Ibrahim, Abuja
Governors of the 36 States of the Federation have assured that none of them will pay workers in their employment less than the N30, 000 approved national minimum wage.
Rising from a meeting under the aegis of Nigeria’s Governors’ Forum, NGF in Abuja, they (the Governors) expressed their readiness to share information on the status of the negotiations in the various states, with the NLC.
The Chairman of the NGF and Governor of Ekiti State, Dr. Kayode Fayemi made the disclosure while briefing journalists at the end of their meeting in Abuja.
Dr Fayemi concretely declared that the governors have all indicated, without any equivocation, that they will subscribe to the act of parliament that has been passed on the 30,000-minimum wage
According to her, “As far as we are concerned, no opportunity or decision in the NGF to backtrack from the minimum wage.
“It is a settled matter, and governors have all indicated without any equivocation, that we subscribe to the act of parliament that has been passed on the 30,000 minimum wage.
“There is no debate; we have accepted that.
“The negotiation team you are talking about is about the consequential impact and each state has started that process,” he disclosed”, he said.
The NGF Chairman however admitted that the financial capacity of the states were not the same, adding, “there may be states that are in a position to pay N50, 000.
His words, “What we can tell you is that no state we pay less than N30,000 when we finally get to that point.”
The NGF meeting also received briefing from Conference of Speakers of the State Houses of Assembly, “on some constitutional matters,” which Dr. Fayemi described as “very fruitful deliberation.”
In a communiqué issued at the end of the meeting, the forum said it was briefed by Ministry of Finance, Budget and National Flaming, on the Geo-Referenced Infrastructure and Demographic Data for Development (GRID3) programme in Nigeria.
The programme, Governor Fayemi explained, would ensure that state governments have the right information in identifying where people live and how critical services could be most equitably and effectively allocated.
“Members pledged to work with the ministry, by providing the right institutional arrangements in all states to ensure that each state supports the generation and management of geospatial data,” he promised.
He disclosed that the FY2018 Independent Verification Assessment (IVA) exercise conducted across states by Auditor General of the Federation (AuGF) and the World Bank, would be concluded in January 2020 while the transfer of 2018 grants to states would be in March next year.
Fayemi stressed further that as State Transparency, Accountability and Sustainability (SFTAS) implementing partner, the NGF Secretariat will carry out regional sensitization workshops in March 2020 “and kick start the provision of technical assistance to states through customized just-in-time advisory and training, exchange visits and peer learning events.”
The governor further revealed that a delegation led by Deputy High Commissioner of the United Kingdom to Nigeria, Mrs Harriet Thompson, briefed the forum on the UK-Africa Investment Summit 2020, which will be hosted by the UK Prime Minister in January.
He said, “The Forum received an update on the health priorities of the Forum especially Universal Healthcare, Nutrition and on the Polio Eradication Initiative, including the Seattle Declaration.
“Governors reiterated their commitment to an effective implementation and tracking of the Seattle commitment,” he said.